Written by Jaimee Green
Pharmacy staff members for Northeast Montana Health Services will use National Hospital and Health-System Pharmacy Week, Oct. 21-27, to underscore the many new and vital roles they now play in patient care.
The evolution has been especially dramatic in recent years as pharmacists have moved beyond compounding and dispensing medications to become vital members of multidisciplinary patient-care teams.
“Many consumers are not aware that pharmacists play a critical role in preventing medication errors, advising prescribers on the best drug choices, and working directly with patients to ensure they understand how to use their medications safely and effectively,” said Rosanne Erickson, a pharmacist for NEMHS. “Pharmacy Week is a great way to inform the public about how pharmacists can help them get the most benefit from their medicine,” she added.
On Oct. 31, open houses will take place at both the Poplar and Wolf Point pharmacy campuses.
Pharmacists are experts on the thousands of medications available today, how each one works in the body, and the ways to use each one safely and effectively. Today’s pharmacist has received six years of education focused on medication therapy and many complete post-graduate residency programs. They advise doctors and nurses on the best medications and monitor every patient’s medication therapy and provide quality checks to detect and prevent harmful drug interactions, reactions and mistakes.
The internal hospital pharmacy is managed by La Rae Davis. At the retail pharmacies for the Poplar and Wolf Point campuses, employees include Jordon Nelson, Sam Hentges, Louise Rensvold, Marlene Turner, Margie Shanks, Preppi Turner and Rosanne Erickson.