SOP’s Rocafort Receives $50,000 AFPE-NACDS Community Pharmacy Fellowship

Award will support development of medication adherence project to be implemented in community pharmacy setting.

By Malissa Carroll
September 9, 2013

Tim Rocafort, PharmD, assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, has been awarded the 2013 Pharmacy Faculty Development Fellowship in Community Pharmacy Practice – Medication Adherence by the American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education (AFPE) and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation. This distinguished award, which includes a $50,000 stipend, is presented to only one pharmacy faculty member in the United States each year.

“The Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science is honored that Dr. Rocafort has been selected as this year’s recipient of the AFPE-NACDS Foundation’s Pharmacy Faculty Development Fellowship in Community Pharmacy Practice,” says Magaly Rodriguez de Bittner, PharmD, BCPS, CDE, professor and chair of PPS. “We are proud of his accomplishment and know that this award will provide him with a wonderful opportunity to expand his clinical and research skills as a junior faculty member at the School of Pharmacy. We look forward to witnessing the impact his work will have on the lives of his patients.”

According to the New England Healthcare Institute, patients’ failure to adhere to their medications as prescribed costs the health care system approximately $290 billion each year. Script Your Future, a campaign of the National Consumers League, also reports that nearly 125,000 people die each year because they did not take their medications as prescribed.

The AFPE-NACDS Foundation’s Pharmacy Faculty Development Fellowship in Community Pharmacy Practice – Medication Adherence was developed to allow a full-time pharmacy faculty member to pursue at least six months of advanced education, training, or research in medication adherence in a community pharmacy practice setting. Rocafort, who was selected to receive this fellowship by the AFPE Board of Grants, will use the fellowship’s $50,000 stipend to develop a pharmacist-led transition of care process to be implemented at his Johns Hopkins Home Care Group pharmacy practice site.

“As pharmacists, we continue to see patients’ health decline as a result of a lack of understanding about their medications and commitment to improving their health,” says Rocafort. “However, I have found that examining this issue from a patient’s perspective offers an innovative way for us to develop educational programs that can cater specifically to patients’ needs, which allows them to become an active member of the health care team and more accountable for their health. This will help to eventually improve their medication adherence and outcomes.”

Rocafort’s proposed program will effectively incorporate educational interventions that address patient-related issues regarding medication non-adherence in the high-risk and specialized population of kidney transplant patients prior to their discharge from the hospital.

“I was delighted to hear that Dr. Rocafort received the 2013 Pharmacy Faculty Development Fellowship in Community Practice – Medication Adherence,” says Nathan Thompson, RPh, MBA, MPH, director of outpatient pharmacy for the Johns Hopkins Home Care Group. “His continued and focused work will help drive long-term medication compliance and improved outcomes for patients of the Johns Hopkins Outpatient Pharmacy who have received a solid organ transplant.”

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