Pharmacy Students Teach Lessons on Rx Drug Abuse

West Virginia University School of Pharmacy students are making the rounds in their state and Pennsylvania to teach middle and high school students about prescription drug abuse and illicit drug use.

West Virginia University School of Pharmacy students are making the rounds in their state and Pennsylvania to teach middle and high school students about prescription drug abuse and illicit drug use.

The pharmacy students’ lessons, which are part of their introductory pharmacy practice experiences (IPPEs), were tailored to address current state concerns and meet objectives of the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy People 2020 campaign, according to the pharmacy school.

Drug abuse prevention and healthy life choices have been the emphasis of recent lessons in middle and high schools.

The pharmacy students also informed the younger students that addiction is a disease, the pharmacy school noted in a press release.

“When students are confronted with a situation that involves abusing drugs or alcohol, then they are now able to make an informed decision, and hopefully it is not to participate,” pharmacy student Catalina Saenz told The Daily Athenaeum.

Heroin, marijuana, alcohol, inhalants, cocaine, and amphetamines were covered in the pharmacy students’ presentations.

For the middle school crowds, the second-year pharmacy students provided a more interactive presentation that focused on maintaining a healthy body and brain and preventing substance abuse.

The middle schoolers played a game where they had to guess between 2 photos which was a piece of candy and which was a pill.

“We feel this presentation is unique in that it is given by students for students, which hopefully helps the students relate to us a little more easily,” Saenz told The Daily Athenaeum.

Recently, President Barack Obama made a stop in West Virginia to announce federal, state, local, and private sector efforts to reduce prescription drug abuse. Pharmacists will be key players in implementing these efforts.

West Virginia has the highest death rate from drug abuse in the country.