Pacific’s Medicare Part D program will be honored by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy for its effectiveness in expanding access to affordable healthcare and in improving public health.

The Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences Medicare Part D program was one of only four student-led community engagement programs to receive the 2013-14 American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) Student Community Engaged Service Award, a national award sponsored by Teva Pharmaceuticals. The award will be presented on July 29 at the closing banquet of the 2014 AACP Annual Meeting. Winning programs were selected because they deliver important information about medication use to consumers and have been proven to expand access to affordable healthcare and improve public health.

RS42516_Kaiser Health Fair 2014 1Each year during the Medicare Part D open enrollment period (October 15–December 7), student pharmacists participate in an ongoing and multidimensional series of Mobile Medicare Health Clinics that enrich the lives and well-being of seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries in northern/central California. Held in 15 different cities over the past six years, these clinics are targeted to Medicare beneficiaries, the majority of whom are seniors, during the period when they can enroll into or switch their Part D prescription drug plan.

Dr. Rajul Patel ’01, ’06 is the faculty advisor for the program. The student team leader for this grant was Keira Domer ’14 and other student team members included Marise Awad ’14, Shu Lu ’14, Natalie Hajian ’14, Zohal Fazel ’14, Aaron Tran ’14, Janine Lastimosa ’14, Vittoria Ledesma ’14, and Kimberly Kwok ’14. Taking place concurrently with student education and training, faculty work with community partners, such as HUD-subsidized housing complexes, retirement communities and senior centers, to identify host sites for the mobile clinics. They are deployed in a variety of settings to help ensure that students and faculty are able to effectively reach underserved and under-represented populations.

Students provide core clinic services, such as helping patients effectively navigate the healthcare system, better understand their Part D prescription drug benefit, minimize out-of-pocket costs, optimize medication use and avoid vaccine-preventable diseases. In addition, students understand the role that pharmacists, prescribers, the federal government, insurance providers and pharmaceutical companies play in society’s healthcare.RTA_3292

In addition to receiving a commemorative prize, the winning pharmacy schools will each receive $10,000 to be used exclusively to support the expansion of the recognized program or new community engaged service projects at the school. Each team receives a $5,000 financial stipend for enhancing or sustaining the recognized program or for travel support to attend and present their projects at professional meetings. The award also includes a $1,000 stipend for the faculty advisor and up to $2,500 to cover travel, lodging, and registration expenses for one designated student and one faculty advisor to attend the 2014 AACP Annual Meeting.

Learn how students impact the community here.

About AACP
Founded in 1900, AACP is the national organization representing the interests of pharmacy education. AACP is comprised of all accredited colleges and schools with pharmacy degree programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education, including more than 6,500 faculty, 62,500 students enrolled in professional programs and 5,100 individuals pursuing graduate study. Learn more:

Reprinted with permission from AACP.

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