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  • February 23, 2021 4:15 PM | Julie Schmidt

    WMSHP started off the month of February with an excellent continuing education presentation delivered by Bryant Froberg, PharmD, PGY2 Infectious Disease Resident at Munson Medical Center.  Dr. Froberg discussed antifungal pharmacotherapy concepts, including spectrum of activity and pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic considerations.  A big thanks to Dr. Froberg for an informative presentation.  Our March continuing education session will be presented by Kevin Bozymski, PharmD, BCPS, BCPP.  Dr. Bozymski is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Sciences at the Medical College of Wisconsin School of Pharmacy.  We look forward to hearing his presentation entitled “More Than Immediate-Release Tablets: Exploring Treatment Options for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder” via Zoom on March 11th.

    Highlights from our February Board meeting include discussing a committee merger between our current Community Outreach Committee and our Membership Committee.  This merged committee will be jointly led by our Resident-at-Large as well as a Board member.  Prior to the merge, our Community Outreach committee has been working diligently on a new project.  The COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for everyone, including health-system pharmacy personnel who have spent countless hours directly caring for these patients and staying up-to-date with ever evolving treatment protocols.  As a token of our appreciation for our local health-system pharmacies’ dedication, we will be sending gift cards to institutions to be used to purchase treats for pharmacy staff.  As a member of WMSHP, if you would like to join this committee and assist with their future events/activities, please email leadership@wmshp.net

    Reminder: The Michigan Pharmacists Association Annual Convention and Exposition (MPA ACE) will be taking place virtually this upcoming weekend February 26 – 27, 2021.  I hope you strongly consider joining in this educational and networking opportunity.  As an organization, WMSHP will be adopting four students this year for the Adopt-A-Student networking event during the MPA ACE.  Each of these students will have a networking opportunity with a WMSHP member via Zoom.  Three members of WMSHP will also represent our organization at the House of Delegates at the MPA ACE.  For more information on the MPA ACE please visit MPA Virtual Annual Convention & Exposition (michiganpharmacists.org).

  • January 20, 2021 8:34 PM | Julie Schmidt

    Happy New Year!  I would like to start off by saying thank you to all of you for the opportunity to serve as your next President this year, and thank you to Kyle and Stacy for setting great examples for me the past two years.  Last year looked a lot different than anticipated for us and I am hopeful for what this year has in store.

    We started off the year with our first virtual CE presentation on January 7th.  Emily D’Anna, PharmD, CPPS, gave an excellent presentation on medication safety entitled “Preventing Errors is Not Perfection.” On February 11th, we will hold our next virtual CE presentation on “Antifungal Pharmacotherapy Concepts.”  This will be presented by Bryant Froberg, PharmD, PGY-2 Infectious Disease Resident at Munson Medical Center.

    At our first Board meeting of the year, it was decided that our Spring Seminar for 2021 will be held virtually this year.  We received great feedback regarding our virtual seminar last September, and we plan on providing the same level of quality this year.  Traditionally this seminar has taken place in May, and we are happy to report it will be this year as well.  Mark your calendars for Tuesday, May 11th!  Registration will be posted on www.wmshp.net at a later date.

    The new year also brought newly elected WMSHP board members.  Your newly elected board members for 2021 are:

    President-Elect 2021: Sarah Hoerner

    Secretary 2021 – 2022: Brad Miller (Incumbent)

    Board Members 2021 – 2022:

    • ·         Shelby Kelsh (Incumbent)
    • ·         Derek Vander Horst (Incumbent)
    • ·         Amy Quinones
    • ·         Kwanta Wu

    Resident-at-Large: Ashley Blanchette (Spectrum Health PGY1)

    Reminder to Pharmacy Residents: Research abstracts are due to Andrea Borst (andrea.borst@spectrumhealth.org) by February 5th for an opportunity to present your research project to our membership.  Each year WMSHP selects two residents to share their research at our April meeting.  This is a great opportunity to practice your presentation before the Great Lakes conference!

  • November 14, 2020 2:37 PM | Brad Miller (Administrator)

    President-Elect (2021):

    Sarah Hoerner is a clinical pharmacist at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, with interests in hematology/oncology and bone marrow transplant. She is a Michigan native who grew up in the metro-Detroit area. After graduating from Concordia University Wisconsin with her PharmD, Sarah completed a PGY-1 residency at Spectrum Health. Following residency, she stayed on at the children’s hospital. She has been a member of WMSHP since moving to west Michigan in 2015, and has served as a board member for several terms. In her free time she enjoys figure skating, spending time outdoors, knitting, and trying new restaurants and breweries.

    Secretary (2021-22):

    Brad Miller is an Informatics Pharmacist at Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids (but really spends all of his time working from home, thanks to COVID). He graduated from Ferris State University in 2002, and completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at Spectrum Health. He has worked as the Pharmacy Director at Pennock Hospital in Hastings, and as Lead Clinical Pharmacy Specialist in Emergency Medicine at Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids. Brad has been the WMSHP Secretary since 2004, so it's a good thing for him that there aren't term limits in this organization.

    Board Members (2021-22):

    Shelby Kelsh graduated from SUNY-Buffalo with her PharmD and moved to Western Michigan to complete her PGY1 at Spectrum Health. She joined WMSHP as a resident and has been a member since. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor at Ferris State University. She holds a clinical practice site at Spectrum Health Internal Medicine Residency Clinic as an ambulatory care pharmacist. Shelby has had the pleasure of serving as a WMSHP board member since January 2019. Over the last two years, Shelby has coordinated multiple CE events and the WMSHP/FSU Residency Showcase. Please consider re-electing Shelby to the board, so she can continue serving this great organization.

    Amy Quinones is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist in Internal Medicine at Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo MI. She was born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario, Canada and completed part of her undergraduate training at Lake Superior State University. She received her Doctor of Pharmacy Degree from Ferris State University in 2008. She has been an active member of WMSHP for many years and would love the opportunity to serve on the board to further her involvement. Her current areas of interest include oncology, infectious disease, diabetes, and neurology.

    Derek Vander Horst is a native resident of west Michigan, currently residing in Grand Rapids. He obtained his PharmD from Ferris State University in 2015; and then completed a PGY1 Pharmacy Practice Residency and a PGY2 Infectious Diseases Pharmacy Residency at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City. He currently serves as a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist in adult infectious diseases at Spectrum Health. Derek achieved board certification in pharmacotherapy and infectious diseases pharmacotherapy in 2016 and 2018 respectively. He is an active member of the Michigan Society of Health-System Pharmacists (MSHP), serving on the Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee since its inception; and also served as the secretary of the Northern Michigan Society of Health-System Pharmacists (NMSHP) in 2016. He is excited about the opportunity to continue to serve his community as a WMSHP board member for a second term.

    Kwanta Wu is the Pharmacy Manager at Ascension Borgess Lee Hospital, a critical access hospital located in Dowagiac, MI. Prior to that, Kwanta served as the Director of Pharmacy at a long term acute care hospital in Indiana for 9 years. She received her Doctor of Pharmacy degree, completed a PGY1 General Practice Residency and a Nephrology Research Fellowship from the University of Illinois at Chicago’s College of Pharmacy. She is also board certified in Pharmacotherapy (BCPS) and Geriatric Pharmacy (BCGP). Although new to the Michigan pharmacy world, working in a rural, critical access hospital like Borgess Lee has brought her long term interests in transitions of care and opioid stewardship to the forefront. If selected to be a board member, broadening her network and collaborating with other organizations in Michigan is her key goal. Outside work, tennis is her passion, with a few of the USTA league championships under her belt.

  • October 23, 2020 3:15 PM | Anonymous

    Early last month we hosted our annual WMSHP/FSU Residency Showcase with a little twist of the virtual variety. The event was a great success with 25 programs, representing 4 states, and over 70 prospective residents that attended! Thank you to all who participated and to especially to those who were integral in making the first virtual residency showcase a successful event. Later in October, we also held our first virtual CE of the year on a very relevant and emerging topic. Thank you to Giulia Barlow for sharing her unique perspective and expertise on the abuse potential of gabapentinoids!

    We will be continuing our virtual CE meetings with Spectrum Health’s PGY-2 Ambulatory Care Reisdent, Juan Reyes, PharmD, who will be presenting "'Relax, take a deep breath. Everything will be fine.' -Your inhaler" on November 12th. We look forward to seeing all of you virtually!

    Board elections are fast approaching and we plan to open the polls for membership voting starting on October 29th. Please keep an eye out for more information on the candidates, which will be posted on the website and emailed to active members for consideration. The voting period will end just prior to our November 12th meeting, so make sure you cast your votes!

    If you have not already done so, please make sure you set up an account online with our CE provider, WMed, prior to attending our monthly meetings. If you need assistance, please consult our website’s Help page at https://wmshp.net/help, or you can view the instructional videos on WMed’s website at https://wmed.cloud-cme.com/default.aspx?P=2000.

    If you would like more information about WMSHP, please visit our website at www.wmshp.net.

  • September 21, 2020 3:40 PM | Anonymous

    Earlier this month, we successfully delivered our 51st Annual Spring Seminar over a virtual format. This meeting is typically held in May but due to the extenuating circumstances of the pandemic, the conference was first delayed and then transitioned to a live, virtual format. There were some great presentations from highly accomplished speakers, as well as some great opportunities for industry networking. In addition, WMSHP presented two scholarships to local P3 pharmacy students. Congratulations to Tayler Jones, who received a $1000 scholarship, and Dawn Nguyen, who received a $500 scholarship! A huge thank you to all who participated, especially the Board of the organization for planning and executing a successful event!

    As we progress through these uncertain times, we are continuing to deliver our programming virtually. On October 1st, in collaboration with Ferris State University’s College of Pharmacy, we will host our annual pharmacy residency showcase. This too will be conducted in a virtual format. More information on the event can be found at https://wmshp.net/event-3957805.

    October will also mark the resumption of our monthly CE meetings. The next scheduled meeting for WMSHP will be held on October 15th with Mercy Health Saint Mary’s Psychiatry Clinical Pharmacist, Giulia Barlow, PharmD, BCPS presenting “Gabapentinoids: Unnerving Trends in Misuse and Abuse”. Subsequent monthly meetings will continue at the normal regularly scheduled intervals with the plans for most to be delivered virtually.

    It’s almost time for our annual WMSHP Board elections.  If you are interested in becoming more involved in WMSHP by running for a Board position, please contact me or any other member of the Board.  The deadline for nominations, including a brief applicant bio, is Friday, October 9th.

    We look forward to continuing to meet your needs as a member of our organization and hope to "see" each of you at our upcoming meetings!

    Best Regards,

  • June 19, 2020 9:10 AM | Anonymous

    National pharmacy organizations recently released a joint statement regarding racial injustice. The WMSHP Executive Board firmly supports the stance of these national organizations and embraces our duty to listen, learn and collectively address this crisis. Our communities bestow upon us the responsibility to advocate for change to improve every patient’s care. The Board strongly encourages open and honest discussion of the issues we face to identify actions that we can pursue to eliminate all forms of racism, discrimination and injustice.

    The WMSHP Executive Board remains committed to serving you, our members, through these unique times. We recently met to discuss upcoming events and begin planning for next year’s programming. The next event that was planned is the July social event with the West Michigan Whitecaps. Due to the current conditions with the pandemic, and uncertainties surrounding the current state of professional baseball, we will be cancelling this year’s social event. Next, in discussing the upcoming Spring Seminar, which was rescheduled for September 8th, 2020, we reached consensus to transition this to a virtual format. We will be working diligently to finalize the plan and details of the event to ensure the event provides the same high quality benefits that you have become accustomed to with previous events. Once these plans are finalized, they will be shared with you.

    We remain committed to ensure that future meetings and events of WMSHP are delivered safely, effectively, and in concordance with state and national guidance. Monthly meetings will continue into the fall, as scheduled, and we will make every effort to proactively share a transparent plan for the delivery (virtual vs face-to-face) for each meeting.

    Each of you will be receiving a survey in the near future. This survey will be a collection of questions from both WMSHP and MSHP to inform future directions of the organizations and characterize your needs as a member. Please take the time to complete this survey and provide us with valuable feedback and information.

    Finally, I would like to recognize the tireless efforts that each of our board members have made over the past 6 months to ensure the continued success of our organization. These are unprecedented times and each member of the board has risen to the challenge before us. I sincerely appreciate their efforts and urge you to take the time to thank each of them for their hard work and dedication to this great organization.

    As always, please do not hesitate to contact me or the entire board with any questions, concerns or requests. We welcome all ideas and thoughts and look forward to continuing to serve your professional needs.



  • March 20, 2020 12:15 PM | Anonymous

    Our March meeting, which seems like an eternity ago, was exceptional. Dr Greg Wellman from Ferris State University’s College of Pharmacy delivered a riveting, assumption challenging presentation that undoubtedly vaulted us all to a deeper understanding and appreciation of the challenges facing our nation related to the pricing of prescription products. His attention to detail, focusing on reputable facts and literature, was a breath of fresh air as we prepare to enter into the next presidential race where this will likely be a major issue. Thank you, Dr. Wellman, for sharing and displaying your logic in the pursuit of a greater understanding of the prescription drug pricing problems that so many of our patients routinely face. I feel confident in saying your precise analysis and passion for this topic moved not only myself but many of the attendees to take action.

    We are certainly, now, in different times. As of the writing of this post, Michigan has 334 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 1 confirmed death - numbers that will continue to rise in the coming days. The pandemic engulfing our world has challenged us all personally and professionally and WMSHP has not been spared from these challenges. At our March meeting, and through numerous communications since, the WMSHP Board of Directors has made several difficult decisions to help guide the organization through these troubling times.

    As a result, our April 9th meeting will showcase the works of pharmacy residents Dr. Niki Krancevich and Dr. Yoon Soo Park virtually to do our part in mitigating the spread of the novel coronavirus and preserve appropriate social distancing measures. Continuing education credit will be provided to those who tune into the YouTube livestream. The second difficult decision the Board was tasked with making was to postpone our Spring Seminar, initially scheduled for May. The meeting has been rescheduled to occur September 8th, 2020 at the Prince Conference Center. We are acutely aware of the challenges this may present for some members to secure live CE prior to the licensing renewal deadline of June 30. Some alternative options are available online. There are  free online webinars through ASHP (do NOT need to be a member to access) here. Several online programs are also available through MPA here. Sites such as Pharmacists Letter and FreeCE.com often have an abundance of online webinars that can be utilized to secure the necessary credits as well. Various health institutions, given recent conference cancellations, have taken up the responsibility to provide CE to their professionals. Reach out to your respective institutions to identify other potential opportunities. These decisions were not made lightly, we truly pride ourselves on serving our members. However, the current circumstances dictate we make adjustments in the interest of a greater responsibility to mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus.

    On a lighter note, the WMSHP Board would like to congratulate Dr. Katie Axford, a past-president of WMSHP, on her election as Speaker of the MPA House of Delegates at the Annual Convention and Exposition last month! We are confident her leadership will be very much appreciated at the state level!

    Finally, each year, the Western Michigan Society of Health-System Pharmacists (WMSHP) makes available one or more non-renewable scholarships to eligible P3 students who are native or current residents of West Michigan. This year, WMSHP will award one $1,000 scholarship and one $500 scholarship to deserving students. Completed applications must be received by April 3rd, 2020. The winners will be notified by May 1st, 2020 and presented an award at the Spring Seminar on September 8th, 2020. For more information, please visit our website here.

    In closing, I wish you all continued health and safety through these difficult times. We will get through this together. I will spare you all from yet another inspirational quote on overcoming adversity.

    Best Regards,

  • February 24, 2020 3:53 PM | Anonymous

    I sincerely hope each and every one of you was able to soak in some of the recent sunshine! What a welcome surprise for February in Michigan! It is certainly an exciting time of year being fresh off the MPA Annual Convention and Exposition with all of the exciting discussions about our great profession!

    Last month, we had a great discussion led by Peg DeVoest and Shelby Kelsh, along with PharmD Candidate Trenton Cunningham, on optimizing the delivery of transitions of care services through the use of student pharmacists. Thank you all for your participation and discussion of this innovative and practical solution to a commonly encountered scenario!

    Our next meeting will be held on March 12th at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo.  Dr. Gregory Wellman, PhD, RPh, Professor of Pharmacy Administration at Ferris State University, will be discussing one of the many hot topics in the recent presidential debates, "Why do prescription medications cost so much? It's not for the reason everyone keeps telling you...". What a timely topic, which we are all deeply connected to, for an election year being delivered by a highly respected member of our profession, and many other professions! Be sure to RSVP early to secure your spot at this meeting to ensure the advancement of both your professional and civilian knowledge! I look forward to a great turnout next month and seeing each of you in Kalamazoo. 

    Best Regards,


  • January 27, 2020 1:01 PM | Anonymous

    We kicked off the year with a thorough and practical review of oral antimicrobial dosing discussion in various infectious diseases, giving thoughtful insight into condition, patient and microbe specific considerations. Thank you to Dr. Shen and all of our member who were able to make it to Martell’s earlier this month for a great educational and networking event.

    Our next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, February 13th, and will feature Ferris State University College of Pharmacy faculty members, Peggy de Voest and Shelby Kelsh, along with a Ferris State University PharmD Candidate, Trenton Cunningham. They will be discussing the role of pharmacy students in transitions of care. This will be a great session to inform higher-level engagement of PharmD candidates, as well as creating opportunities to broaden our clinical impact with students. The meeting will be held in the lower level of the Wege Center (Classroom 1, 2 and 3) at Mercy Health Saint Mary’s in Grand Rapids.  We hope to see you all there!

    Many of you may have seen emails and calls for action from various pharmacy organizations on an interesting item that came about in October this year. President Trump signed executive order 13890, “Protecting and Improving Medicare for Our Nation’s Seniors”. A specific component of the executive order included instruction to eliminate specific Medicare regulations that require more stringent supervision than existing state scope of practice laws, or that “limit health professionals from practicing at the top of their license”. In an interview on October 29th, CMS Administrator, Seema Verma, indicated that the agency may grant pharmacists provider status, citing the president’s Medicare executive order. Open comment to CMS regarding potential changes recently closed on January 17th. The timeline for a plan in relation to the executive order is within 1 year, meaning that by October 2020, there could be significant progress toward pharmacists being recognized as providers, at the federal level, potentially paving the way toward the ability to bill Medicare directly for pharmacist services.

    Reminder to Pharmacy Residents: Submit your research abstract for an opportunity to share your residency project with our members at the April WMSHP meeting!­­­ Abstract should be submitted to Shelby Kelsh (shelbykelsh@ferris.edu). Don’t miss out on this chance to practice your presentation before the Great Lakes conference!

  • December 21, 2019 12:51 PM | Anonymous

    With 2019 set to close soon and 2020 clearly in our sight, I eagerly welcome the opportunity to serve as your next President. This past year we’ve accomplished a lot and had exceptional program offerings providing our membership with relevant, up-to-date information on an abundance of topics. These offerings were capped off with a great review of recent updates from the realm of infectious diseases led by Dr. Juliet Chijioke. We will be looking to continue our excellent programming, as well as expanding opportunities to serve our communities with opportunities led by our Community Outreach Committee.

    We are excited to kick off 2020 with our first meeting in Kalamazoo on Thursday, January 9th at Martell’s.  Dr. James Shen, a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist in Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infectious Diseases at Ascension Borgess will be presenting “Oral transition of antibiotics for bloodstream infections: a tough pill to swallow?”. We look forward to seeing each of you there for our first meeting of 2020 and to a great presentation to start off the new decade!

    As each year passes, we also get the opportunity to welcome the next batch of newly-elected WMSHP board members.  The most recent election results for 202 are as follows:

    President-Elect: Julie Schmidt

    Technician: Marie Mitchell

    Treasurer: Jordan Posey

    Board Members:

    ·        Tara McAlpine (incumbent)

    ·        Andrea Borst (incumbent)

    ·        Thomas Beuschel

    ·        Natalie Washburn, PharmD (incumbent)

    Resident-at-Large: Tawnie McGraw (Mercy Health Muskegon PGY1)

    If you would like more information about WMSHP, please visit our website at www.wmshp.net.  We hope everyone has a great holiday season, and we look forward to seeing you in 2020!

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