Tomorrow begins another semester at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. For me, the semester begins with the APhA-ASP (American Pharmacists Association – Academy of Student Pharmacists) Patient Counseling Competition. I’ve seriously been looking forward to this for months now, and I can’t believe that it’s here already!
The Patient Counseling Competition is actually a national competition for student pharmacists across the country. This week begins the first round of our local competition here at the college. My co-chairs and I have been planning this for months, and we’re so excited that it’s finally coming together!
APhA-ASP National Patient Counseling Competition
Here’s how it works:
Last month, student pharmacists who signed up for the competition got a list of ten medications. When they come in to compete, they’ll be given a case for a patient who is picking up one of those ten medications from the pharmacy. The student gets a few minutes to look this over, and then they’ll counsel a “patient” (a volunteer from the faculty and staff at the college) about their new medication.
The top ten participants will move on to the final round at the end of this month where they will get another case with a different medication. We’ll determine a champion from our college who will then go to the national conference in March to compete against the champions from other pharmacy schools. When I went to the national conference my first year of pharmacy school, our Ohio State winner got second runner-up, which was so exciting for our chapter. The year before, our winner actually won the national competition!
It’s a super cool experience—for any year of pharmacy school. For our first-year student pharmacists, it’s a chance to practice patient counseling in a low-risk setting and an opportunity to expose themselves to this aspect of patient care that they will continue to develop throughout pharmacy school. For second-, third-, and fourth-years, it’s an opportunity to really hone and perfect their counseling skills. There are also prizes for the finalists from our Ohio State Chapter as well as cash prizes at the national level.
This is a fun way to get involved at the College of Pharmacy and with APhA-ASP, and really it’s just one of the many things going on at the college this semester. I hope that this year’s participants will have as much fun competing as I have had in creating our OSU competition this year!