J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital celebrates National Hospital and Health-System Pharmacy Week, October 16-22, 2011. J.C. Blair Pharmacy staff includes back row (l-r) pharmacist Todd Fortney, PharmD, RPh; pharmacist Jillian Hollen-Archey, PharmD, RPh; front row (l-r) Nancy Householder, CPhT; Jenn Boozel, CPhT; Marge Lightner, CPhT; Ethel MacDonald, CPhT; Gail Young, CPhT; and pharmacy director Tom Marko, RPh. Absent from photo: pharmacist Mike Miller, RPh; pharmacist Judy Miller, RPh; pharmacist Don Wetzel, RPh; and Jane Bellucci, LPN. For more information about the J.C. Blair Pharmacy, visit www.jcblair.org.
J.C. Blair Pharmacists Highlight Vital Role in Improving Patient Safety
Pharmacists at J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital will use National Hospital & Health-System Pharmacy Week, October 16-22, 2011, to underscore the many new and vital roles they now play in patient care. The evolution has been especially dramatic in recent years as pharmacists have moved beyond compounding and dispensing medications to become fundamental members of multidisciplinary patient-care teams.
Most patients are not aware that the pharmacy staff plays a critical role in preventing medication errors, advising prescribers on the best drug choices, and working directly with all involved parties to ensure the understanding of how to use medications safely and effectively. Pharmacy Week provides an opportunity to educate the public about how pharmacists can help them get the most benefit from their medicine. Plans for the week include: a daily “Pharmacy Question of the Day” engaging the hospital personnel, promotion of Pharmacy Week through patient bedside cards and table tent cards in the waiting areas and cafeteria, patient handouts regarding important medication issues, and a “Get to Know Your Pharmacy Staff” activity.
Hospital and health-system pharmacists have been able to take on enhanced patient-care roles because of a number of factors, including the deployment of highly trained, certified technicians. The entire pharmacy staff shares their expertise in preparing and dispensing pharmaceuticals to the patients it serve. Numerous patient safety programs, drug evaluation reviews, and quality assurance measures have been established through the pharmacy staff to ensure the most up-to-date, complete and accurate care during their inpatient stay.
Pharmacists are experts on the thousands of medications available today, how each one works in the body, and the ways to use each one safely and effectively. Pharmacists who graduate today receive six years of education focused on medication therapy. The pharmacy staff has established a professional, working relationship with the rest of the hospital staff that allows them to advise doctors and nurses on the most appropriate medications. The staff monitors every patient’s medication therapy, providing quality checks to detect and prevent harmful drug interactions, reactions, or mistakes.
The J.C. Blair Pharmacy is operational from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends and holidays. A pharmacist is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist in any instance that may arise during closed hours. The J.C. Blair pharmacy team is composed of three full-time pharmacists, three part-time pharmacists, three full-time technicians, and three part-time technicians. The pharmacy fills approximately 27,000 physician medication orders, including units of IV admixtures on a monthly basis. Pharmacy Week highlights the vital role in quality healthcare that the pharmacy staff at J.C. Blair serves, as well as its commitment to provide the best care possible to patients.