UW News

March 4, 2010

Katterman Lecture highlights innovations in pharmacy practice and patient care

UW Health Sciences/UW Medicine

“Pharmacists are a vital, if under-used, part of health care.”

This recent Los Angeles Times headline spoke a truth that practicing pharmacists have known for years: that pharmacists offer significantly more to the health care system than many people realize.

By the time students receive their Pharm.D. degrees from the UW School of Pharmacy, for example, not only do they have extensive scientific and clinical knowledge, but they also know how to provide everything from vaccinations and screenings to medication-therapy-management services and health education clinics.

The School of Pharmacy seeks to instill in pharmacy students a passion for being innovative health care professionals. That goal of inspiring innovation continues even after students enter the field. This year’s School of Pharmacy Don B. Katterman Memorial Lecture is a case in point.

Alumni and community members are invited to the UW campus to hear Department of Pharmacy faculty members Lingtak-Neander Chan and Don Downing talk about major advances in pharmacy practice. The event is titled “Keeping Up, Staying Ahead: Innovations in Community Practice, Inpatient Care and Pharmacy Management.”

Associate Professor Chan will discuss pharmacotherapeutic breakthroughs in the past decade in hospital and other inpatient settings. He will explore how pharmacists as health care professionals can capitalize on this knowledge to further improve the outcomes of patients, benefit society, and move the pharmacy profession forward.

“I hope the presentation will inspire the audience to become even more active in initiating efforts to advance pharmacy practice as well as the medical sciences,” said Chan.

Clinical Professor Downing will look at the history and future of community pharmacy practice in Washington state, including a discussion on pharmacy personnel management. Further, he will talk about how pharmacists, as public health professionals, have changed and will continue to change the U.S. health care landscape.

Both men are licensed pharmacists and popular professors. Chan, who has bachelor’s degrees in pharmacy and toxicology as well as a Pharm.D. degree, also serves as a faculty member in the UW graduate program in nutritional sciences and in the UW Graduate School. He was previously clinical assistant professor of medicine and pharmacy practice at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he was also clinical pharmacist for the medical intensive care unit. He is active in several professional organizations, including the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.

Downing, who holds a Bachelor of Science in pharmacy from the UW, has owned community pharmacies and is a consultant for pharmacy startups, primarily within underserved populations. He has worked extensively with Native American tribes in Washington state, previously serving as pharmacy director of the Puyallup Tribal Health Authority. He has received several national awards for his roles in public health and community service. In addition, he is a media consultant for the American Pharmacists Association.

“I’m always excited to talk about pharmacists’ role as innovators and game-changers,” said Downing. “It’s extremely meaningful to have this opportunity to talk about advances in pharmacy to an audience made up of many former students, current collaborators and community members.”

The 31st Annual Don B. Katterman Memorial Lecture is open to all members of the community. It will take place at 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 6, in the Foege Auditorium, Room S-060, UW William H. Foege Building. To register and find out more, please visit the Katterman Web site