Newswise — (St. Louis)- The anticipation is building for Terry Seaton, Pharm.D., BCPS, as he’s about to embark on a three-year journey which will take him all over the country. Seaton, professor of pharmacy practice at St. Louis College of Pharmacy, was just named president-elect of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) after a national election by its members. The organization is one of the premier professional groups in pharmacy and represents more than 14,000 clinical pharmacists across the country.
Seaton already knows one of the biggest issues he’ll tackle.
“Right now, ‘provider status’ in pharmacy is the hot issue,” he says. “It may even be the hottest issue in pharmacy in a long time.”
Currently, Medicare beneficiaries have limited access to pharmacist-provided clinical services beyond those related to dispensing prescriptions. Other members of the interprofessional team that pharmacists work with, including physicians, physician’s assistants, social workers and certified nurse practitioners, are already recognized as providers under Medicare Part B. Legislation was recently introduced in the U.S. Congress that adds pharmacists to that list. ACCP is supporting additional legislation, soon to be introduced, that would provide yet another benefit of comprehensive medication management for seniors.
“We need to convince legislators that pharmacists provide critical access and unique value that leads to desirable patient outcomes,” Seaton says. “We have to make sure they fully understand the roles pharmacists can play, especially as we’re transitioning into a new era of team-based care, and compensated for the quality and safety of care.”
Seaton was instrumental in developing the medication therapy services rules now in place for pharmacists and physicians in Missouri to work together for the benefit of the patient. The new law allows specially certified pharmacists, working under a protocol with a state-licensed physician, to monitor, initiate, and adjust medications for patients to manage diseases, such as asthma, diabetes, and high blood pressure. These rules have benefited patients by increasing access to pharmacist-provided care.
“I’m looking forward to applying the lessons I learned about the advocacy process onto a national level,” Seaton says.
Another major agenda item for ACCP is nurturing student chapters at colleges of pharmacy across the country. Seaton says the infrastructure is now in place to strongly support these young pharmacists as they begin their careers. St. Louis College of Pharmacy will have one of the largest ACCP chapters in the country.
“Students at the College have the ability to affect change across the profession,” Seaton adds. “The men and women I see every day in the classrooms and hallways are well positioned to take on national leadership roles.”
Seaton will begin his year as president-elect in October. He’ll be inaugurated as president of the organization at the ACCP global conference in San Francisco in October 2015. That conference will draw clinical pharmacists from all over the world. Seaton’s time will conclude on the ACCP board by serving as past president for a year. St. Louis College of Pharmacy President John A. Pieper, Pharm.D., is a past president (1993-1994) of ACCP. More information about ACCP can be found on their website, www.ACCP.com.
About St. Louis College of Pharmacy: Founded in 1864, St. Louis College of Pharmacy is the region’s only independent college of pharmacy. The College is the third oldest and 10th largest college of pharmacy in America. Founded by luminaries such as Henry Shaw, St. Louis College of Pharmacy has been partnering with other recognized leaders to care for the health of our region’s citizens for 150 years. Located in the heart of one of the world’s finest biomedical research and patient-care centers, the College provides innovative education, research, and career opportunities for students. The College is viewed by leaders of other premier academic and health care organizations as a critical component needed to deliver high quality patient-centered care. The curriculum integrates the liberal arts and sciences alongside introductory and advanced practice experiences where students can develop expertise and become leaders in the profession and their communities. Beginning in the fall of 2014, the curriculum will expand to three undergraduate years and four years of the professional program. Graduates will earn a Bachelor of Science degree after four years, and a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) at the completion of their studies. The College admits students directly from high school and accepts transfer students and graduates from other colleges and universities. More than 1,300 students are currently enrolled from 28 states and several countries, including Canada, China, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, and Vietnam. College alumni practice throughout the nation and in 13 different countries, providing a strong network to assist students with their goals. Additional information is available at www.stlcop.edu.