UF pharmacy dean named speaker-elect of pharmacy association
(From left) Past APhA President Tim Tucker (University of Tennessee), UF students: Mika Fujinaka, Dani Underwood, Jeanette Connelly, Dean Bill Riffee, and Past APhA President Ed Hamilton (UF)
The University of Florida dean of the College of Pharmacy is becoming a delegate for patient care in the largest U.S. association of pharmacists. The American Pharmacists Association elected William H. Riffee, Ph.D. as speaker-elect to its House of Delegates at its annual meeting last month.
More than 60,000 practicing pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists, student pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and others advancing the profession are members of APhA. Its House of Delegates, represented by more than 450 elected members from 50 state associations, meets each year at an annual meeting in a forum for discussion, consensus-building and policy-setting for the pharmacy profession.
Riffee believes it’s important for representatives from the academic world of pharmacy to be involved in APhA policies.
“We bridge between what is being done now in patient care and what will happen in the future as educators for the next generation of practitioners,” Riffee said.
Next year as speaker, Riffee will begin serving two years on the Board of Trustees, which implements the policies developed in the House of Delegates.
Drug supply shortages and their impact on patient care, standardization of pharmacy practice descriptions and recognition as health care providers and controlled substances regulation are some of the issues Riffee expects to weigh in on as a delegate on the national level.
In 2011, as an officer of the Florida Pharmacy Association, Riffee presided as speaker of its House of Delegates during the 121st annual meeting.
Adding to Riffee’s honor were recognition of UF faculty and students at the meeting.
Professor Carole Kimberlin, Ph.D. received the Academy of Pharmaceutical Research and Science Research Achievement Award. Kimberlin was chosen for her significant contributions to pharmacist-patient relationship and communications, and her research impact on and patient health attitudes and behaviors related to medication use.
Other faculty recognition included the Phi Lambda Sigma Advisor of the Year Award to Michael McKenzie, Ph.D., senior associate dean for professional affairs; and the A. Richard Bliss Kappa Psi Grand Council Citation of Appreciation awarded to Tony Palmieri, Ph.D., an assistant clinical professor.
More than 50 UF student pharmacists, traveling by bus, joined their professors at the New Orleans meeting. Among them, Jeremy Lund, a third-year student from the Orlando campus, received an APhA Foundation Scholarship as the John Gans Scholar. The pharmacy students also received the Chapter of the Year award from the International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation, and the APhA Academy of Student Pharmacists Region 3 Award for their Heartburn Awareness project.
Finally, the UF students and alumni won the challenge for the APhA-PAC Award, by raising $11,000 that was matched by the challenge matching program for a total of $22,000, far exceeding last year’s PAC donations of $3,000.
The meeting closed at a special breakfast with just a bit of gloating for the Gator Pharmacy Nation, Riffee said. APhA past-President Tim Tucker from the University of Tennessee had to wear a Gator apron while serving the Gator tables along with the Florida Past President Ed Hamilton, a UF alumnus.