University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy Commits to Community Pharmacy Practice Transformation

By sponsoring Team Kentucky of Flip the Pharmacy, the Center for Advancement of Pharmacy Practice at the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy is leading the way for academic institutions engaged in transforming community-based pharmacy practice.

With the heightened need for medical care and prescription drugs, the demand for immunization services at an all-time-high, and a noticeable scarcity of primary care physicians, the community pharmacists of rural Kentucky have emerged as the most accessible health care providers in a period defined by COVID-19.

While the critical role of the pharmacist might have been spotlighted this year, it didn’t take a global pandemic for University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy leaders to start believing in the future of community pharmacy. They acknowledge that community pharmacists are impeccably positioned to bridge the gaps in care that exist in rural Kentucky’s medical deserts.

In alignment with the college’s long-standing commitment to practice innovation, the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy has invested in the Flip the Pharmacy initiative through sponsorship of Team Kentucky. Flip the Pharmacy is a 5-year pharmacy transformation program aiming to re-work community-based pharmacy practice beyond filling prescriptions and toward an ongoing focus on a patient's health.

The college’s practice advancement efforts are spearheaded by the Center for Advancement of Pharmacy Practice (CAPP), which was established by the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy to transform pharmacy practice within Kentucky and the nation. Through research, education, engagement and scholarship, CAPP facilitates the creation and translation of novel care delivery models within pharmacy practice that improve medication use and health outcomes.

At the forefront of these efforts is Brooke Hudspeth, PharmD, chief practice officer (CPO) and associate dean of pharmacy practice. She is the program administrator for Team Kentucky of Flip the Pharmacy.

Hudspeth shares that the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy’s investment in Flip the Pharmacy will provide direct coaching to 12 participating pharmacies throughout Kentucky.

Through a collaboration with Sullivan University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, coaches from both colleges convene monthly to discuss their respective pharmacies’ progress.

Using monthly change packages, Flip the Pharmacy coaches work with local pharmacy teams to implement the 6 key transformation domains with an emphasis on continuing patient care planning with documentation in various eCare Plan platforms.

Hudspeth elaborates, “In support of Flip the Pharmacy, we have implemented virtual continuing education programming focused on diabetes melitus. These sessions provide pharmacists across the state with tangible resources that will enable them to provide enhanced care and improve health outcomes for these patients.”

Furthermore, Hudspeth oversees all community pharmacy efforts for the college and actively strives to engage students in practice transformation efforts. As a member of the ACT (Academia-CPESN Transformation) Pharmacy Collaborative, the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy is focused on developing a curriculum framework that incorporates elements of the advanced community pharmacy practice model.

The University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy has pioneered several programs aimed to expose students to pharmacy practice transformation in its Doctor of Pharmacy program. Their Patient-Centered Care Experience Laboratory utilizes a layered-learning model that integrates Pharmacist eCare Plan documentation, a key component of the Flip the Pharmacy program.

Additionally, their Longitudinal Experiential Education in Pharmacy program immerses students in pharmacy practice through hands-on experience in various pharmacy settings.

According to Hudspeth, learning doesn’t stop after pharmacy school.

“Practice advancement is lifelong learning,” Hudspeth points out. “The process is always evolving as we launch new projects, develop upcoming pharmacy leaders, and forge lasting partnerships with other organizations.”

By cultivating a new generation of community pharmacists, the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy demonstrates its commitment to increasing patient access to pharmacist-provided care beyond the pandemic. Equipped with the skills and experiences rooted in Flip them Pharmacy, students will be prepared to carry pharmacy forward and reach the rural communities that need pharmacists most.

The University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy is located in Lexington, Kentucky and was ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the nation's top ten pharmacy programs in 2020.

The Flip the Pharmacy program hopes to directly support 1,000 pharmacies and impact thousands more. To date, over 800 pharmacies are receiving direct coaching and implementation support. Learn more at www.flipthepharmacy.com