UT College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences News

Posts Tagged ‘education’

Measuring critical thinking and professionalism

Photo of Dr. Michael Peeters

Dr. Peeters

Dr. Michael Peeters (PharmD, MEd, FCCP, BCPS), a clinical senior lecturer in the Department of Pharmacy Practice, is a psychometrician with a research focus is pharmacy education and has a recent stream of papers on the assessment of cognitive development among PharmD students.

After writing a review article a number of years ago [Peeters MJ. Cognitive development of learners in pharmacy education. Curr Pharm Teach Learn. 2011; 3(3):224-229], Dr. Peeters helped develop and implement a program to assess UT PharmD students’ development in critical thinking. In preparation, he conducted literature searches and reviews within the pharmacy education and health professions education literature [Reale MC, Witt BA, Riche DM, Baker WL, Peeters MJ. Development of critical thinking among health professions students: a meta-analysis. Am J Pharm Educ. 2015; 79(5):article S4; Peeters MJ, Zitko KL, Vaidya VA. Critical thinking development in pharmacy education: a meta-analysis. Inov Pharm. 2016; 7(1): article 10].

The results of critical thinking development from these classes of PharmD student participants have recently been published [Peeters MJ, Boddu SHS. Assessing development of critical thinking: one institution’s experience. Curr Pharm Teach Learn. 2016; 8(3):271-278].

Of note, one critical thinking assessment that was used also measures professionalism. In the most recent Standards for PharmD education, the American Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) has required all PharmD education programs to assess their students’ professional development. Thus, the critical thinking assessment that also measures professionalism was used to help measure this important ACPE outcome as well. Along with documentation from teaching and learning of pharmacist professionalism and ethics (i.e., one of Dr. Peeters’ teaching roles), he presented these findings [Vaidya VA, Peeters MJ. Assessing professional development (Standard 4): the University of Toledo’s experience. Am J Pharm Educ. 2015; 79(5):article S4]—with a publication in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. PharmD students at UTCPPS demonstrated development in their professionalism. Additionally, Dr. Peeters received an honorable mention within the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy’s 2016 Innovations in Teaching competition.


UT pharmacists remind patients to discuss medications during awareness month

Oct. 19, 2016
Rebecca Schwan

Nearly half of all Americans have taken at least one prescription medication and 20 percent have used three or more prescription drugs in the last month. But according to a National Council on Patient Information and Education survey, more than half report not taking their medications as prescribed, putting them at risk for serious health concerns.

During October, which is American Pharmacists Month and Talk about Your Medicines Month, University of Toledo pharmacists are encouraging patients to build a relationship with their pharmacist in order to learn how to take medications properly, manage multiple prescriptions and reduce prescription costs.

“Your pharmacist is likely the most accessible health care provider you have,” said Lindsey Eitniear, clinical pharmacist. “Yet not enough people take the time to talk to their pharmacist about their health. That is truly unfortunate, because we can provide many services to help our patients understand and manage their medications better.”

More than 12,000 prescriptions are filled each month across UT’s three outpatient pharmacies and pharmacists work directly with patients who are recovering in the UT Medical Center or being treated in several of UT’s clinics.

“We educate patients about taking their medication properly, identifying potential side effects and managing chronic conditions,” Eitniear said. “We also work to resolve insurance concerns and explore options for reducing out-of-pocket expenses.”

New legislation also allows a physician to permit pharmacists to make adjustments to medication dosages including those for blood pressure and diabetes at the pharmacy.

“We work closely with physicians to suggest simplifying medications or to clarify what has been ordered,” Eitniear said. “This extra communication ensures patients know how to take their medications correctly and is an added safety for patients.”

Eitniear said it is safest when patients use the same pharmacy each time they need a prescription filled, particularly if the patient takes multiple drugs.

“We can track some controlled medicines and a few others are tracked through insurance companies, but there is no one database that holds all patient prescription information,” she said. “Even a seemingly simple antibiotic can cause severe interactions with some medications. Pharmacists can spot these potential hazards if prescriptions are filled in the same location.”

Consistent use of the same pharmacy also allows a relationship to form between patient and pharmacist.

Holly Smith, UTMC Outpatient Pharmacy manager said patients should talk about all medications they are taking at each doctor’s appointment. She said printouts of all prescribed medications can be requested from the pharmacy and shared with physicians and family members.

“I tell patients to carry the list in their purse or wallet so they always have it with them,” she said. “It’s also important that there is at least one designated family member who knows your health history and medications in case of emergency.”

This also is a good time to take inventory of any leftover or expired medications. Pharmacists can advise patients the proper methods for disposing of old prescription and over the counter medications.

“We accept unwanted medications in a drop box in the emergency department of UTMC,” Smith said. “Patients with injectable medications should follow the directions on their sharps container for proper disposal.”

Smith said unused medications also can be mixed with used kitty litter or coffee grounds and disposed of in the trash. Medicated patches should be folded over and stuck together before being thrown away.

“I would advise anyone getting a prescription filled to take a minute to ask a few questions about the medication you will be taking. You can even call your usual pharmacy to review medications and discuss any concerns,” Smith said. “It is our goal as pharmacists to do the best we can by our patients so they are able to care for themselves and stay well.”


Patient education saves a life

By Hanin Chouman

On Friday, March 13th, 2015. UToledo SNPhA hosted a health fair at Ashland Manor, a low-income housing complex in Toledo, OH. Nine students, including six professional and three pre-professional students, participated in the health fair, providing services like education about hypertension and stroke, HIV/AIDS, kidney disease, immunization, and diabetes. Students also provided free blood pressure and blood glucose checks for participants at the health fair.

The participating students helped about 50 patients, making interventions that ranged from advice about diet and exercise to asking patients to see their primary care physicians. Of particular interest on this day was a major intervention that the group made, which led to the saving of a patient’s life.

When Audrey, a student, checked this patient’s blood glucose and the glucometer read ‘HI’, she called another student Akeem Bale, to help with the patient. Akeem re-checked the blood glucose and got the same reading, and after asking the patient several questions, Akeem told the patient that he needed to go to the emergency room (ER) to be seen now because his blood glucose was very high. The patient told Akeem that he was okay and didn’t need to go to the hospital; he said he was feeling okay. Akeem continued to persuade the patient about the need to go to the ER. After much persuasion and counseling, the patient agreed to go the ER, and EMS was called in to take the patient to the hospital. Several days after this major intervention the management of the housing complex reached out to the students. They we were told that the patient had suffered from a mild heart attack, and thanks to Akeem’s intervention, we saved the patient’s life.

Akeem Bale is a P2 Pharm.D student, and the current president-elect of The University of Toledo’s chapter of Student National Pharmaceutical Association.