Challenge Accepted, Challenge Met
UHCOP's NCPA Chapter Wins Simplify My Meds® Challenge to Encourage Use of Medication Synchronization Program
The UH College of Pharmacy Chapter of the National Community Pharmacists Association won a national competition for encouraging patients and independent community pharmacists to use a prescription-synchronization program called "Simplify My Meds®" at the 2016 NCPA Annual Convention Oct. 15-19 in New Orleans.
According to the NCPA, "Simplify My Meds® is a turnkey adherence program developed for the exclusive use of NCPA members. The free program provides pharmacies with tools and training to implement a medication synchronization program. Simplify My Meds® helps pharmacists consolidate and coordinate a patient's prescriptions so they can all be refilled on the same day each month, improving patient adherence and revolutionizing pharmacy operations."
Chapter Past President Edwin Ng said members used the opportunity to engage patients and pharmacists through community health-and-wellness events.
"The system has been proven to help boost patient adherence to their medications, while also increase efficiencies and revenue for the independent pharmacist," Ng said. "We were able to educate patients at every health fair in which UHCOP NCPA was involved, and let them know about the advantages of 'med sync' and how they are able to go to a local independent pharmacy to find out more about it."
Ng credited the chapter's Community Outreach co-chairs Stephanie Pham, Teri Nguyen and Arlene Thomas for their leadership in coordinating member participation and promotional efforts. In addition to being recognized at the national level, the chapter also received a $250 cash award for successfully completing the challenge.
The convention also brought an individual honor for Ng, who was awarded a NCPA Presidential Scholarship by the NCPA Foundation. Serving as chapter president during the 2015-16 year, Ng said he was determined to help re-invigorate the chapter's activities toward its core purpose of promoting careers in independent community pharmacy.
Among the chapter's activities during his presidency were hosting one of the chapter's largest "Meet and Greet" networking events for students and Houston-area independent pharmacists, collaborating with two other UHCOP student organizations to host a three-part legislative education and advocacy series, and developing new partnerships with Houston-area independent pharmacists through wellness events at the pharmacies.
"Independent pharmacy’s way of creating a whole new environment for patients and the services they provide has definitely made me want to pursue a community pharmacy career," Ng said. "The way they interact with patients and the time they have to explain to them about certain medication’s side effects, things to avoid, and tips on how to get better or live a healthier life has made me feel like I am putting my skills and knowledge to work and actually making a difference in patients' lives."