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Putting the "Community" in Community Pharmacy

With Cohort 2 for Flip the Pharmacy coming to a close, I had the wonderful opportunity as Dr. Smith’s (Team Lead) APPE student for the month of August to visit and connect with Team Arkansas’s pharmacies regarding their experiences and growth over the last two years. These visits were conducted both in-person as well as virtually. I was able to communicate with not just the champions, but also with coaches, owners, and even techs involved in the process. This experience allowed me to not only network but to also see and understand how different pharmacies are being operated based on their demographic as well as their available resources. That being said, I came upon a realization, although each pharmacy operated differently and each pharmacy set varying goals, they all shared one common mission: growth.

Now, when talking about growth, these pharmacies are not just talking about growth as an individual but rather growth as a unit - as a community. They understand that although it takes one person to start an initiative, it takes people to make a movement - to make a change to a community. Each and everyone of these pharmacies want to improve healthcare as a whole for their community.

When talking about growth, many members of Team Arkansas mention the idea of “cohesion” and “communication.” A majority of champions and coaches have praised FTP's follow-up and communication with them. And with Dr. Smith's consistent efforts, they felt more motivated to continue their progress. Team Arkansas also liked the idea of webinars and a more relaxed form of communication between pharmacies engaging in the program t

o “bounce ideas off of one another”, to “stay engaged,” to “network,” and to have “some semblance of accountability.” In addition, Team Arkansas recommends that resources such as the Change Packages offered by Flip the Pharmacy should be distributed to all of AR CPESN pharmacies.

Although pharmacy as a profession is constantly evolving, one of the roots of pharmacy is the community. Change begins with an individual, but it is up to that individual to reach out and communicate their ideals for it to spread and grow. The pharmacies of Team

Arkansas have shown me the importance of uniting and advocating for change. We can do so much more and achieve our common goals when we band and work together as a community!

Angel Vu, PharmD Candidate 2023

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Little Rock, AR

Megan Smith, PharmD, BCACP University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences FTP Team Arkansas

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