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LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Learning Objectives

After completing this chapter, the reader will be able to:

  • Determine fundamental drug information skills for all pharmacy students.

  • Identify settings where drug information skills can be developed and refined.

  • Define the recommended training path for drug information specialists.

  • Describe job responsibilities of contemporary drug information specialists.

  • Formulate a strategy by which interested candidates can learn about available drug information residencies and fellowships.

KEY CONCEPTS

Key Concepts

  • image Information retrieval, evaluation, and application skills represent a significant component of the core skill set each pharmacist must possess.

  • image Drug information skills are core concepts incorporated in pharmacy curricula.

  • image The majority of foundational skill development should occur prior to student participation in advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs).

  • image Drug information rotations may occur in institutional and nontraditional settings (e.g., pharmaceutical industry, managed care, group purchasing organization), a reflection of the expanding role of drug information in contemporary pharmacy practice.

  • image Pharmacy residency training standards include core drug information retrieval and evaluation skills for both postgraduate year one (PGY1) and postgraduate year two (PGY2) programs.

  • image Consistent with the profession-wide model for specialist training, the preferred training model for a drug information specialist is a PGY1 residency program, followed by completion of a PGY2 residency in Medication-Use Safety and Policy (formerly Drug Information).

  • image The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), the organization charged with accrediting pharmacy residency programs, has developed competency areas, goals, and objectives that must be incorporated into ASHP-accredited PGY2 Medication-Use Safety and Policy residency programs.

  • image PGY2 programs in Medication-Use Safety and Policy are not limited to health systems, as programs exist in academic, industrial, and managed care settings.

  • image Fellowship programs emphasize skills beyond those provided in residency training programs especially related to research.

INTRODUCTION

image Information retrieval, evaluation, and application skills represent a significant component of the core skill set each pharmacist must possess.1 As the medication experts of the health care team, drug information skills are important for all pharmacists to possess. In addition to the basic skills for all pharmacists, opportunities to specialize in drug information practice also exist. Practice scope for those who practice specifically in drug information has evolved from a focus on literature retrieval, evaluation, and application to specific organizational needs and patient care situations such as therapeutic policy management, oversight of safe medication practices including information systems, and promotion of health and wellness. The dynamic health care environment and expanded practice responsibilities were traditionally linked to drug information practices (e.g., medication-use policy); developing and maintaining practitioners with expertise in such activities is critically important.2,3 This chapter will focus on key drug information education and training needs for all pharmacists, especially those necessary for practitioners specializing in drug information practice.

DRUG INFORMATION IN PHARMACY CURRICULUM

image Drug information skills are core concepts incorporated in pharmacy curricula.2 Pharmacy curricula must be designed ...

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