Student Pharmacist Praised for Provider Status Support

May 5, 2015
Meghan Ross, Associate Editor

Pharmacy student Keith D. Posendek received praise for his support of the provider status movement in a recent Pharmacists Provide Care campaign update from the American Pharmacist Association.

Pharmacy student Keith D. Posendek received praise for his support of the provider status movement in a recent Pharmacists Provide Care campaign update from the American Pharmacist Association (APhA).

The campaign update, penned by APhA CEO and Executive Vice President Tom Menighan, BSPharm, MBA, ScD (Hon), FAPhA, noted more than 1000 pharmacists, student pharmacists, and pharmacist advocates had pledged support for the Pharmacists Provide Care campaign, wrote letters to Congress, and used social media to raise awareness over the weekend of the APhA’s 2015 Annual Meeting and Exposition.

Posendek, a P6 (fourth professional year) student at the University of Findlay College of Pharmacy student, contributed the following to his school’s Facebook page:

“As pharmacists, we know how much we can and already do for patients to improve their health. However, many legislators and many in the general public do not know what we do, what we can do, and how often we perform actions that provide better care to patients and improve outcomes. It is our responsibility to inform elected officials about topics related to health care and pharmacy such as provider status, which will only increase our abilities to improve patients’ lives.”

Posendek’s public support for the provider status movement won him a $150 gift card and a Pharmacists Provide Care T-shirt from the APhA.

In an interview with Pharmacy Times, Posendek said he was passionate about being actively involved in professional organizations and making the voice of pharmacists heard.

“We have been and will continue to further improve peoples’ lives, if only given the opportunity,” said Posendek, whose future plans involve a postgraduate year 1 pharmacy residency at Mercy Medical Center in Canton, Ohio.

The student pharmacist said he was drawn to advocacy work because he wants to be involved in enacting change that can improve patients’ lives.

To promote the provider status movement, Posendek has been involved in several organizations: the Ohio Society of Health-System Pharmacists, APhA-Academy of Student Pharmacists, and the Ohio Pharmacists Association. He said these organizations have helped him get in touch with state and national officials via e-mail, phone, and personal letters. Each time, elected officials responded to his messages.

Posendek also spread awareness of the provider status movement by engaging with social media posts from the APhA.

“As I have been taught, it is really about getting out there and talking with your state, national, and local representatives and informing them about pharmacy-related issues,” Posendek said.

Ultimately, Posendek hopes provider status would allow pharmacists to bill for the services they perform that improve patient outcomes.

“Obtaining provider status is important to me because I feel that, as health care professionals, pharmacists are more than capable of delivering exemplary patient care and improving patients’ lives,” Posendek told Pharmacy Times.