Given that The Ohio State University is a world-renowned research institution, it is no surprise that cutting edge research is being led by hundreds of researchers at both the Wexner Medical Center and our very own College of Pharmacy.
Before I started pharmacy school, my definition of research was fairly narrow. I thought research was limited to laboratory experiments and expensive equipment. While we do have many of these types of opportunities, the College of Pharmacy has faculty working on pharmacy practice research projects as well. These projects tend to focus on how pharmacists provide care, clinical outcomes relating to pharmacists’ interventions, or some other aspect of patient care.
To provide you with some examples, I’ll tell you a little more about two of the projects I’m working on.
At the College, I’m working on a project with Dr. Alexa Valentino. Dr. Valentino is faculty at the College, and in addition to teaching, she practices at a Federally-Qualified Health Center (FQHC) here in Columbus. FQHCs are primary care clinics that provide a wide range of services to under-insured or uninsured patients. Our project is a survey-based assessment of clinical quality measures at FQHCs. We are hoping to assess the relationship between having clinical pharmacy services as a part of the FQHC practice and a variety of clinical outcomes. In other words, we’re curious if having a pharmacist on site to educate and counsel COPD patients on proper inhaler use improves disease management in these patients. COPD is just one example of a clinical outcome that we are assessing; we’re actually taking a look at quite a few more!
Another project of mine is with an internal medicine pharmacist at the Wexner Medical Center. We’ve designed a project that will assess the opioid prescribing habits of internal medicine practitioners three months before and three months after the state recommendations for prescribing opioids were updated in Ohio. We’re hoping to use this data to look at the impact of these recommendations and to possibly inform future prescribing policies within the hospital.
The opportunity to get involved with the writing of the project proposal and data collection has been really rewarding, and I’m very excited to see what’s to come in terms of potential project posters presentations, and publications. If you have any questions about research, please let me know!