Pharmacy Students Get Hands-On Sterile Compounding Experience

June 20, 2015
Meghan Ross, Associate Editor

Lipscomb University College of Pharmacy students recently began working in a new sterile compounding laboratory constructed partly in response to the fungal meningitis outbreak in 2012.

Lipscomb University College of Pharmacy students recently began working in a new sterile compounding laboratory constructed partly in response to the fungal meningitis outbreak in 2012.

The college noted that a number of Tennesseans were affected by the deadly outbreak stemming from New England Compounding Center products, which led to 64 fatalities.

The pharmacy school was also inspired to invest $500,000 in the construction because of the higher industry standards for compounding, The Tennessean reported.

The lab, which opened 2 months ago, can hold up to 14 students working in the sterile environment, according to the college. It was also designed to comply with standards set by the Tennessee Board of Pharmacy and US Pharmacopeia (USP) Chapter <797> Pharmaceutical Compounding — Sterile Preparations.

“I can’t think of a better way to simulate the real-life practice applications of compounding sterile preparations than integrating the students into a lab that meets the requirements of USP <797>,” said Jimmy Torr, PharmD, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, in a school press release. “Learning in this facility will enhance student comprehension of sterile compounding processes and guidelines and allow for increased assessment opportunities. Ultimately, the skills learned in the new facility will enable our student pharmacists to be practice-ready for this aspect of patient care and enhance patient safety.”

The lab also includes video technology so that preparations can be live-streamed in areas on campus for educational purposes. Professors will also be able to review the video with students to provide feedback on their techniques.

Nina Smothers, DPh, president of the Tennessee Board of Pharmacy, told The Tennessean that she thought the school was being proactive by constructing the facility.

“You want to make sure that [students] have knowledge of all the aspects of the profession,” Dr. Smothers told The Tennessean. “They’re all on board and working toward that training.”