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Legislator Dr. William Spencer: The Pharmacy Factor: Pharmacy Podcast Episode 206

Ron Lanton - with True North Political Solutions interviews Legislator William Spencer with Suffolk County New York's 18th District. 

The 18th legislative district encompasses the northern portion of Huntington Township. The district includes the communities of Cold Spring Harbor, Lloyd Harbor, Huntington Village, Halesite, Huntington Bay, Centerport, Northport, Asharoken and Eaton’s Neck. Its southern border includes a large part of Huntington Station and Greenlawn and a small section of East Northport. Historic Route 25A winds its way through the district, which was once rolling farmland. Now it is a thriving community, offering a wide variety of living and working environments.

Legislator William Spencer 


15 Park Circle, Suite 209

Centerport, New York 11721  

(631) 854-4500

Direct download: Legislator_Spencer_Final.mp3
Category:Pharmacy -- posted at: 9:37am EDT

Taking Pharmacy to a Whole New Level: Pharmacy Podcast Episode 205

Our interview is with Adma Metcalf, PharmD with

Hill Country Apothecary

Adam grew up as a second-generation pharmacist in his father’s independent pharmacy. While there he learned the crucial role that an independent pharmacist can play in community health care.  His education and appreciation for pharmacy continued, when as an undergraduate, he traveled to a medical mission in Guatemala. Here, his previous studies coalesced with pharmacy—united by the goal of simply helping others.

This patient-focused work inspired Adam to dedicate himself to serving his own community.  Adam focuses on individual services such as compounding medicines, medical therapy management (MTM), immunizations, and collaboration with physicians. He believes that exceeding traditional pharmacy model standards means “coming out from behind the counter” and adopting a patient-centered approach.

Direct download: Adam_Metcalf_Hill_Country_Apothecary_FINAL.mp3
Category:Pharmacy -- posted at: 1:03pm EDT

Future Pharmacy Visions with Erin L. Albert, MBA, PharmD, JD: Pharmacy Podcast Episode 204

We welcome back returning Pharmacy Podcast guest - Dr. Erin Albert, PharmD, JD, MBA. Erin is an entrepreneur, writer, pharmacist, attorney, and associate professor. She is the founder of two companies (Pharm, LLC and Yuspie, LLC), and currently is the Director of Continuing Education, and Director of the Ribordy Center for Community Practice Pharmacy at Butler University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. 

Seven Major Trends coming and already here in Pharmacy Practice:

I. Pharmacy in a box. (AKA Vending Machines)

There are going to be more and more pharmacy vending machines coming up.  I’ll tell you why I don’t like them.  In the evenings when I was at law school over 4 years and starving, the only cafeteria options we had at 8 pm at night were the vending machines.  I fed a lot of money into those vending machines.  Sometimes, the food would get stuck inside the vending machine, and I couldn’t get it out.  Now, getting between me and my Snickers bar when I’m hangry, granted, isn’t a pretty scene.  Imagine what the sick, tired and angry patient will be experiencing when the prescription doesn’t come out of the vending machine?  Who’s going to be there to fix it?

Vending machine pharmacies US:

Vending machine pharmacies OUS:

Skills needed for the pharmacist:  Pharmacists are definitely going to need to get tech-y here if they want to dominate in this area.

II. Your house is watching your health

…is going to not only rule our homes, but it will integrate with our health. This is already happening. 

a. It’s in iOS 8. HealthKit and HomeKit are already in your iPhones.  You’ll be able to keep everything on your phones and run your life via this tech.  I’m just in hopes that Apple’s HomeKit has smart tech integrated into the refrigerators and medicine cabinets to simply send off the alert to you and/or your pharmacy when you need a refill on something (and not just Rx, but OTC stuff too).

b. other smart tech for homes monitoring Alzheimer’s patients:

Skills needed for the pharmacist: Tech. Again. And make sure that the pharmacy world is talking to the developers.  And vice versa.

III. The drones will drop off your prescription:

I’m actually kind of baffled as to why Jeff Bezos hasn’t gotten into the pharmacy space just yet.  Once he has his drones up and running, it would make a lot of sense to send prescription drugs through the “drone” channel, particularly to the elderly who no longer drive.  Unless, we go Star Trek and someone invents a drug synthesizer, like the food synthesizer on the show.    

Jeff Bezos & the drones:

Skills needed for the pharmacist: Unless we’re going to require more physics here, I’m not sure what we can do. Physics wasn’t my strong suit.

IV. Pharmacy as a space will need to be first as a third space to survive:

I’m not sure the idea of “grocery shopping” and “running errands” will exist in the future.  This could free up a lot of our time from stuff we have to do (LIKE run errands) into stuff we WANT to do (like, hang out at cool third spaces other than at home and at work).  Or, maybe because of the internet, we won’t have a work space that much longer, which would free us to work WHERE and WHEN we want.  If that’s the case, third spaces are going to need to get a lot cooler for us to WANT to hang out at them.  I still think a bookstore/pharmacy hangout would be a good combo.  A bank/pharmacy would be a good combo for security’s sake.  But, if the medicine cabinet is ordering your refill, and the drones are dropping it off–WHY would you need to go to a pharmacy anymore?

More on third spaces from our Pharmacy Podcast previously:

Skills needed for the pharmacist: Pharmacists who understand design, civic and city development, psychology, and what makes people come to third spaces will win here.  Pharmacies that can create one-of-a-kind experiences for their patients will also win here.  (Let’s face it, going to pharmacies right now is an utterly forgettable experience.  But does it have to be?)  I’m also in hopes we have more pharmacist entrepreneurs seizing this opportunity too moving forward.

I also think this third space concept is an opportunity for the pharmacist as teacher and coach.  I see classes and offerings here as a community hub for wellness.  But pharmacists are not only going to have to bring their clinical knowledge here, but also their creativity in bringing in people to listen to their courses on living better lives.  In this busy world, that could be a hard sell in the beginning.

V. Will live healthcare need to be “edutaining”?

This is one area that I think we humans can beat the machines.  We are more creative than they are; hence, I think pharmacists will, as educators, have an amazing opportunity to provide value by not only educating, but entertaining as well.  In an attention deficit world, I’m sorry to say, mortality really isn’t a “hook” anymore.  Learning about your health and wellness needs to be like anything else–fun–otherwise, we’ll all fall asleep from boredom.  I’m not saying this is right, but I am speaking the truth.

Gaming in healthcare:

Skills needed for the pharmacist:  Teaching. In a variety of ways.  One of the areas of teaching in pharmacy I’m most fired up about is writing.  We focus a lot on oral communication, but we don’t do much in the realm of writing.  So, I’ve personally made it my mission to help students stretch their writing talents–like through this creation of BU Well, and for students writing children’s books on healthcare topics.  This year, we have two that students are producing.  One on vaccinesThe other for 4th graders in Indiana on STEM leaders of Indiana in time for the Indiana Bicentennial in 2016.  I’ve said it here many times, but I will say it again: writers. Are. Leaders. If you are considering pharmacy programs–ask, “What writing communication courses and co-curricular opportunities do you offer?”  I won’t, however, tell you what to do if you see blank stares…

VI. Labs/tests and wellness checks at the pharmacy:

Point of care testing labs.  They are a pain to find, then find the hours of, then schedule to go to when your doc orders labs.  Instead, I think smart pharmacies will start offering lab and tests inside pharmacies on a regular basis, to help patients avoid the headaches of one off lab testing. This could be for Fido too.  Check out Abaxis and their Piccolo machine.

Articles:  and

Skills needed for the pharmacist: Pharmacists need to fully understand labs, lab values, when patients should get labs, and clinical aspects of disease management with labs here.  This is the only instance thus far where I think more clinical wizardry comes into play.

VII. Big Data:

I think in the future, pharmacists will be interacting with a lot of big data to assess and seek trends–in the data for patients, and for populations of patients.  Large self-insured employers already hire one pharmacist to oversee and manage the health of the patient employee population, and manage the drug formulary that an employer offers to its employees.  These days, the drug formulary alone in terms of costs can suck up to 20% of the total healthcare spend for an employer. Keeping a tight reign on this is important.

How Twitter tracks the flu:

Big data on public health campaigns:

Human Nature Lab (Christakis):

Skills needed for the pharmacist: Pharmacists here need to understand pharmacoeconomics and analytics here.  They need to be able to see whether or not a drug is worth the spend.  And, in the era of specialty drugs – managing specialty drug spend alone is going to be a huge opportunity to reign in costs.  They also need some acumen around bioinformatics.  Are pharmacy students learning how to manage and run a drug formularly in school?  Are we handing a blob of data over to students who can find trends and suggest better management of patients based upon an analysis of those trends?  Are we teaching students to PREDICT trends in a population?  Predictive modeling:

Direct download: The_Future_of_Pharmacy.mp3
Category:Pharmacy -- posted at: 1:03pm EDT

New Directions Technology - Mobile Medication Management: Pharmacy Podcast Episode 203

Ron Lanton, with True Noth Political Solutions - interviews Napoleon Monroe with New Directions Technology Consulting, LLC, is the exclusive market developer for the mMed patent portfolio of five granted patents relating to technology that when deployed in concert could take a comprehensive, advanced mobile medication management program to patients wherever they are at any given time.

Besides providing reminders to take the medication or prompts to initiate the replenishment process, an advanced medication management system enabled by the mMed patent portfolio could also:

  • automate identity of the patient and the medication in the patient’s hands
  • verify dosing and confirm self-reports in diaries
  • relate quantity of medication remaining available
  • provide medication-condition alerts (e.g., premature degradation, breakage)
  • alert re drug interaction, adverse drug reactions, abuse
  • stratify patient populations for more or less intense follow-up
  • manage risk mitigation tactics
  • instruct for proper use and disposal
  • integrate real-time usage data into medical records
  • deliver information to a central monitoring facility operated by medical professionals
  • facilitate communication with and support from healthcare professionals
  • assist in real-time diagnosis, determination of treatment
  • enable monitoring of patient condition and informing clinicians, patients and others before, during and after medication administration
  • support healthcare-provider counseling, training and feedback; for example, the system could provide instant instruction, as well as follow-up training, for using an epinephrine injector or a glucosamine kit for insulin shock. Healthcare professionals could participate or be available for discussion or live chat

New Directions Technology Consulting, LLC
1442 Drake Lane 
Lancaster, PA 17601


Email Napoleon Monroe: 
Managing director, New Directions Technology Consulting, LLC
Member, American Telemedicine Association, Parenteral Drug Association, HIMSS and PCHA

Direct download: New_Directions_Technology_Consulting.mp3
Category:Pharmacy -- posted at: 12:27pm EDT