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APhA: Partnering to advance the profession
Michelle Powell 2299

APhA: Partnering to advance the profession

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Association Perspective

Michael D. Hogue, PharmD, FAPhA, FNAP, FFIP, EVP and CEO of APhA

Often when I’m talking with student pharmacists or pharmacists at meetings or in the community, I hear “I sure wish our profession weren’t so divided. Why can’t we be unified like medicine?”

I think perhaps this perception comes from the fact that we have so many specialty organizations supporting pharmacists within a practice discipline. The reality is that in medicine there are well over 200 national professional organizations supporting physicians, far more than the fewer than 25 associations we have in pharmacy. Yet the question about how our national associations work together is an important one.

Founded in 1852 in Philadelphia, APhA is the oldest professional association in pharmacy; according to the American Society for Association Executives (yes, there is an association for associations!), APhA is one of the oldest associations of any type in the United States. As specialization bloomed within our profession, more specialty associations have formed, including the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP), Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), American Association of Psychiatric Pharmacists (AAPP), Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA), Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association (HOPA), National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA), Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists (SIDP), American College of Apothecaries (ACA), American College of Veterinary Pharmacists (ACVP), and more.

All of these organizations are doing great work to move our profession forward through bringing pharmacists together, education, and advocacy. APhA is proud to call these associations and their leaders our friends and colleagues. Every day, APhA personnel actively collaborate with the staff and leaders of specialty organizations as well as other pharmacy organizations such as the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS), the National Association of State Pharmacy Associations (NASPA), the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), the National Hispanic Pharmacists Association (NHPA), the National Pharmaceutical Association (NPhA), Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA), and the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) to ensure our profession speaks with a unified voice. We actively collaborate with state pharmacy associations to directly support local efforts to advance the profession. Ultimately, we all want the same thing: to ensure patients have full access to the care services of pharmacists wherever they may practice.

A few ways in which we’ve collaborated just in the past several months include letters to DEA and FDA as well as urging DEA and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to clarify implementation of the Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment Act for prescribing pharmacists’ training, among other ongoing joint advocacy efforts.

As the new CEO at APhA, I want pharmacists to know that our profession is more united than ever. We really do come together to speak with one voice with regulators and Congress. We collaborate on coalitions, task forces, and myriad initiatives too numerous to call out here. And even if you aren’t a member, APhA represents you. We tirelessly provide a voice for every pharmacist, student pharmacist, and pharmacy team member—for all of pharmacy. We always have, and we always will. Won’t you join us? ■



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