APhA2013: Your Voice. Your Profession. Our Legacy.

Published Online: Monday, March 4, 2013
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Meeting provides pharmacists with resources to enhance knowledge, advance careers and translate theory into practice

WASHINGTON, DC – The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Annual Meeting & Exposition, APhA2013, held March 1-4, drew nearly 6,000 pharmacists and student pharmacists from every pharmacy practice setting to Los Angeles. Attendees heard from pharmacy thought-leaders about the challenges and changes facing the profession that will provide pharmacists with many opportunities to strengthen their role as patient care providers. APhA2013 provided practitioners with resources they need to demonstrate their value and benefit to patients and communities.

The practice of pharmacy is changing and will continue to adapt to new opportunities. The Affordable Care Act, Medicare Part D, state-based health care challenges and national quality initiatives will dramatically alter the landscape. Your Voice. Your Profession. Our Legacy. embodies APhA’s strategic agenda to lead with one strong and compelling voice for pharmacy. Pharmacists have an increasingly vital role in the provision of health care in this country and APhA stands ready to lead the way.

APhA2013 general sessions were headlined by engaging speakers:

  • Pharmacy's Role in the Transformation of the Health Care System - Susan Dentzer, Editor-In-Chief of Health Affairs. The Affordable Care Act presents evolving roles for pharmacy personnel in the creation of a more effective and efficient health care system. As health care operations, policies, and systems are transformed, pharmacists and technicians will encounter both opportunities and challenges. Dentzer offered strategic insights on current and future developments in the complex health care environment and their impact on pharmacy, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.
  • Adapting to Evolving Health Care Delivery Models - Michael Leavitt, former three-term Governor of Utah and former Secretary of Health and Human Services. From the increased focus on the patient as a consumer of health care, to innovations in health care payment models, the Affordable Care Act is transforming the U.S. health care delivery system. As the health care system evolves, will practitioners be able to adapt? Leavitt provided strategic insights about current developments and what they mean for the practice of pharmacy today and in coming years.

APhA 2013-2014 President, Steven T. Simenson, BSPharm, FAPhA, FACA, FACVP, of Ramsey, Minn, delivered The Power of a Strong Voice, stating, “Pharmacists want to be recognized and accepted by the public, payers, policy makers and our peers as health care providers who contribute to improving access, quality and value to health care. Our message must resonate with the patient—the ultimate beneficiary of our services – and our peers on the health care team. But, we also need to do so with those footing the bill, such as state and federal governments and the private payer system.”

Simenson continued, “To make those changes a reality, we need your voice. Experience, knowledge and skills will and should all play a role in positioning pharmacists on the health care team. When it is all said and done, it comes down to us. Pharmacists, who improve patient health outcomes and provide value and cost savings, will be recognized.”

During the meeting, the APhA House of Delegates voted on proposed policies for the areas below. Several new business items were also introduced over the weekend for consideration by the House. For information or outcomes of the deliberations, visit www.pharmacist.com/hod.

  • Revisions to the Medication Classification System
  • Ensuring Access to Pharmacists’ Services
  • Medication Take Back/Disposal Programs

APhA has started preparations for APhA2014, The Power & Promise of Pharmacy, March 28-31, in Orlando. For further information on future meetings, contact APhA staff or visit www.aphameeting.org.

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