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New Practitioner Experience News Late Fall 2020

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OPA New Practitioner Experience (NPX) Launchpad

Late Fall 2020

Welcome to the NPX Launchpad

Welcome to the NPX Launchpad, the quarterly newsletter intended to help you, new practitioners, excel personally and professionally.

Check out our featured articles:

We hope you enjoy the NPX Launchpad and we invite each of you to take the next step in your professional growth by getting involved with NPX today!

Sincerely, your NPX Advisory Committee,

Chair: Kristine (Mason) Cline, PharmD, MS
Vice-Chair: Megan (Johnson) Rees, PharmD
Member-at-Large: Marilee Clemons, PharmD, BCACP
Member-at-Large: Dustin Carneal, PharmD
Member-at-Large: Kay Hoopes, PharmD
Launchpad Coordinator: Megan Stephan, PharmD

Practitioner Profile

Kristine (Mason) Cline, PharmD, MS

What is your current position and where do you work?
Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. My primary role is in the coordination of courses for PharmD students. I also have the pleasure of coordinating and teaching undergraduate and graduate students in addition to precepting APPEs and pharmacy residents.

Describe your career path.
I completed my BS, PharmD, and MS degrees at The Ohio State University. I completed a PGY1/PGY2/MS in Community Pharmacy Administration and Leadership at OSU/Kroger Health.

Describe your involvement with NPX and OPA as a new practitioner.
As a student, I was involved in OPA and loved attending conferences and advocacy events. Upon graduating, I joined OPA as a new practitioner in 2017. At first I attended some committee meetings, and then became involved as a new practitioner liaison to the committees I was already serving on! I then applied to be a member of the advisory team to further engage in advancing the profession with fellow new practitioners.

What excites you the most about being a pharmacist/new practitioner?

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New Leadership

Three Tips to Those Pursuing Pharmacy Residencies - A Response to a New Study (Mar 2018) that Suggests High Rates of Depression Among Pharmacy Residents
By Jangus Whitner, PharmD, BCACP

Original Article Found Here:

As I am nearing the end of my second post-graduate year (PGY2) residency in Ambulatory Care, I frequently take time to reflect on the ups and downs of my time as a resident. There is much to learn from reflecting on the journey as a new practitioner navigating one's way through the demands of residency while attempting to maintain a steady (and hopefully healthy) work-life balance.

Yesterday, an article came through my feed that caught my attention: Rates of depressive symptoms among pharmacy residents, published by Williams and colleagues in the March 2018 issue of the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy (AJHP). The results are unsettling and come just days before "rank list" submissions are due for those students in their final year of pharmacy school (APPE students) and those PGY1 pharmacy residents who are pursuing a residency for the following year.

Continue Reading...

Rx Impact

Helping Patients Navigate the World of Specialty Pharmacy
By Megan (Johnson) Rees, PharmD

The cost of medications continues to skyrocket and leaves some patients with the difficult decision between paying for their prescriptions, paying their rent or in some instances buying their groceries for the week. In addition to maintenance medications for diabetes or high blood pressure, another domain that is often not thought of is specialty pharmacy. Specialty medications vary depending on the insurance plan that a patient has; however, in general these medications are medications that are high cost and high touch.

Part of my job as a specialty pharmacist is working with patients, providers, and insurance companies to help patients access these medications and ensure optimal care while on therapy. Working in an oncology clinic, cost of therapy is a major concern for all. Recently my clinic had the pleasure of caring for a patient who was new to our practice. She was taking an oral oncolytic and had been stable on the medication for over a year. 

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Financial Future

Time Really is Money
By Dustin Carneal, PharmD

Growing up when I wanted the latest and greatest fad, gaming system, or fishing rod, my Dad would ask: “How many hours would you have to work to buy that?” Then the follow-up question “Is it worth it?” As a child and young adult, money for gas, hobbies, and time with friends always seemed “worth it.” I often thought that at $11 per hour, I would need to work one hour to buy an $11 dinner with friends. I would often forget about the $0.70 in taxes and, $2 tip, and $3 for gas. So in reality, I worked 90 minutes to earn the money for an evening with friends. 

Fast forward to today, I continue to utilize this logic to justify a purchase or activity, the equation is just more complex with more expenses and goals to consider. The following are examples and make several assumptions:

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Ohio Days

By Nira Kadakia, PharmD

Westerville is one of central Ohio’s largest suburbs. Located 20-25 minutes northeast of Columbus, it once was part of the Underground Railroad and was previously known as the “Dry Capital of the World” (it’s not anymore). Local museums, like the Anti-Saloon League Museum, help tell Westerville’s history.

Uptown Westerville houses local restaurants and shops, like Java Central, which hosts live music performances and displays works by local artists. Schneider’s Bakery is known for delicious pastries. A personal favorite restaurant is the 1920s-themed Asterisk Supper Club. Uptown Westerville also is home to Otterbein University, which hosted the fourth 2019 Democratic presidential debate. 

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Committee Liaison Reports

Member Services and Development Committee (October 6, 2020)
Liaison: Emmanuel K. Osei

The Member Services & Development Committee met virtually via zoom October 6, 2020. Discussion for this meeting was focused on Membership, OPA awards selection, Slate for 2021-2022 election and National Award Nominations.

Overall renewals are down from previous years. Several actions are being taken to increase membership.

OPA Awards Selection
The committee reviewed and selected nominees for the awards below.

The committee is still soliciting nominations for:

Slate for 2021-2022 Election
The committee approved nominees submitted for Vice President, Executive Committee at Large and District Trustees 3,4,6,7,8,12,13 &14.

National Award Nominations
APhA awards nominations were submitted for:

The next meeting date was set for March 4, 2020.

Pharmacy Economics Committee (October 13, 2020)
Liaison: Andrew Faiella

The major topic of discussion was the progress made with the implementation of provider status. Pharmacists participating in the initial round of provider status implementation are reporting positive experiences. Pharmacists from around the state should be able to apply for Medicaid Provider ID numbers in January of 2021. The second major topic of discussion was providing an update on how a portion of the $100 million in supplemental dispensing fees will be distributed. The amount will be based on the number of Medicaid patients who fill at the pharmacy and the number of scripts the pharmacy fills. The payments will be retroactive as the dispensing fees went into effect on January 1, 2020. 

Compounding SIG (October 14, 2020)
Liaison: Trey Tietz

The committee discussed pending implications of USP <800> in Ohio, including new workflow processes and renovations necessary to meet standards in the chapter. Members agreed that the BOP likely does not have this on their radar and asked Ernie to follow up with contacts at the BOP to get a status update. Third party issues were also discussed, as a member shared information regarding Tricare recouping funds directly from the pharmacy's bank account. There were no new rule changes discussed that directly impacted compounding. The OPA Compound Conference has been postponed until next year. OPA will likely attempt to partner with the Alliance for Pharmacy Compounding (APC - formerly IACP) to bring the conference to a larger audience in a virtual format.

Practice Advancement and Innovation Committee (October 15, 2020)
Liaison: Kelsey Schmuhl

The Practice Advancement and Innovation (PAI) Committee met virtually on October 15, 2020. The committee focused its conversation around provider status implementation and legislative updates. 

On the provider status front, Ohio continues to lead the way for expansion of pharmacy services. Several pilot programs have been successfully implemented throughout the state where pharmacists are being paid for services. If you would like to learn more, you are encouraged to check the Provider Status page on the OPA website, the Provider Status column in the Ohio Pharmacist journal, and read a recent article in Modern Healthcare entitled “Pharmacists in Ohio managing care as providers – and getting paid for it too”.

Due to the upcoming election, there have been many disruptions to committee hearings. After the election concludes, we will enter into the “lame duck” session where there will be efforts to move legislation through prior to the end of this General Assembly. It is not expected that many pharmacy related bills will be passed during the lame duck session.  OPA is currently tracking many laws that could affect pharmacy practice and you are encouraged to review OPA’s Legislative Updates to learn more. 

Resolutions & Bylaws (October 20, 2020)
Liaison: Shea Swick

During the fall Resolutions & Bylaws meeting, there was discussion regarding a proposed resolution on the importance of Ohio pharmacists continuing to uphold racial equity as we strive to provide the best care to all patients. A group will meet to further discuss and edit wording as appropriate prior to the next committee meeting. 

A revision to the bylaws was introduced in which the terms of OPA officers would end no later than June 1, in the event that the transitions could not take place at the Annual Meeting. This revision will be brought to the floor at the House of Delegates for further discussion. Finally, February 11, 2021 is the deadline to submit resolutions to

Due to COVID-19, all meetings are held via Zoom, unless otherwise noted. Please visit the OPA committee webpage for more information.

News & Upcoming Events

Now through December 15: OPA Virtual Midyear Meeting

November 18: Immunization Training Program

December 2: Long-Acting Injectables Training Program

December 9, 12:15-12:45pm: NPX Lunch + Learn, "Tossing and Turning: A Discussion About Insomnia"

Presented by Nira Kadakia, PharmD
Dr. Kadakia is the Assistant Professor of Teaching in Pharmacy Practice at The University of Findlay College of Pharmacy.

NPX is seeking individuals interested in giving a brief, thirty minute Zoom presentations over lunch. Presentations will be held on the second Wednesday of each month. Contact Kristine (Mason) Cline at if you are interested in presenting!

April 20: Deadline for OPA Executive Fellowship in Leadership and Association Management Applications

The Ohio Pharmacists Association Executive Fellowship in Leadership and Association Management is a one-year postgraduate training program conducted at the Ohio Pharmacists Association headquarters under the direction of the staff of OPA. The fellowship is an excellent experience for those interested in learning all areas that are critical to any successful nonprofit organization and in developing leadership skills. The fellow will be trained in association management and governance, advocacy for the profession, leadership, membership development, professional affairs, continuing education development, communications, publication production, media relations, and event coordination.

Get Involved with the Launchpad Newsletter

Help us write the next newsletter!  Articles may be submitted for Practitioner Profile, New Leadership, Rx Impact, Financial Future, and Ohio Days. Have an idea for another article relevant to new practitioners?  You can submit that as well!

Sign up for upcoming articles HERE.

Articles should be submitted in a Word document to Megan Stephan at Photographs for articles should be submitted as attachments for higher quality pictures. Thank you!

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