Rodriguez de Bittner Named One of The Daily Record’s Innovators of the Year

Award recognizes Maryland innovators for their roles in creating new products, programs, services, or processes that help their organizations and communities.

By Malissa Carroll
September 15, 2014

Magaly Rodriguez de Bittner, PharmD, BCPS, CDE, FAPhA, professor and chair of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, has been named an Innovator of the Year by The Daily Record, one of Maryland’s leading business and legal news publications. The award recognizes Rodriguez de Bittner’s work as director of the School’s Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions (CIPS), including her efforts to establish and expand the Maryland Patients, Pharmacists, Partnerships (P3) Program™ at work sites across the nation.

“Dr. Rodriguez de Bittner has a portfolio of innovation that supports her selection as one of The Daily Record’s Innovators of the Year,” says Natalie D. Eddington, PhD, FCP, FAAPS, dean and professor of the School. “The Maryland P3 Program, which she helped launch in 2006, has not only demonstrated a measurable impact on the clinical outcomes of patients, but has also decreased health care costs for many employers across the state of Maryland and beyond. She is an innovative entrepreneur, a savvy businesswoman, and a devoted pharmacy practitioner. This award is a truly well-deserved honor and the first of its kind for a faculty member at the School of Pharmacy.”

The Maryland P3 Program is a partnership between the School of Pharmacy and the Maryland Pharmacists Association, in collaboration with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, the Maryland General Assembly, and the Virginia Business Coalition on Health. It is a pharmacist-delivered comprehensive medication management program for chronic diseases.

Through the program, participating patients who work for self-insured employers meet with specially trained pharmacists who provide ongoing information and counseling about the importance of taking medications as prescribed and making better lifestyle and health care choices. Pharmacists also work collaboratively with patients’ primary care providers to maximize the effects of their medications to assure improved health outcomes.

Although the program began with one self-insured employer in western Maryland, it has grown exponentially in recent years, with services now available at select work sites across Maryland, Georgia, Texas, Virginia, Louisiana, and California. In 2013 and 2014, Rodriguez de Bittner worked to expand the program’s services to eligible state employees at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Maryland State Office Building in downtown Baltimore and across the University of Maryland, Baltimore, respectively.

“It is an honor to be recognized by The Daily Record as one of Maryland’s leading innovators,” says Rodriguez de Bittner. “I feel both humbled and excited to be included in the company of such remarkable individuals as Dr. Peter Beilenson, who has worked tirelessly to transform Maryland’s health care system over the past 25 years, and Dr. Nancy Grasmick, Maryland’s first female state superintendent of schools — both of whom were recognized by The Daily Record this year.”

She adds, “This award is truly a collaborative one to be shared among all partners in the Maryland P3 Program. This program has been an incredible success since its launch eight years ago. Its services have helped increase patients’ productivity at work, reduce the number of sick days used, and decrease overall health care costs for employers. We must continue our work to advocate for these services to be incorporated as an essential part of every patient’s health care plan.”

Established in 2002, The Daily Record’s Innovator of the Year awards program recognizes Marylanders and Maryland-based companies for their innovative spirit, including their roles in creating new products, programs, services, or processes that fill a vital need within their organizations and communities. Both nominators and nominees are required complete an application that explains the innovation and its impact on the state of Maryland. Applications are judged on four basic criteria: originality, impact, challenge, and value.

“Innovators such as Dr. Rodriguez de Bittner make a difference in the economy and success of our region,” says Suzanne Fischer-Huettner, publisher of The Daily Record. “They are not afraid to put their resources and personal effort behind their innovation to ensure success, and their work heralds new frontiers for how we live, work, play, and give back in the 21st century. They turn dreams into realities, and The Daily Record is honored to recognize their vision.”

The 2014 Innovator of the Year awards will be presented on Oct. 15 at a reception at the American Visionary Art Museum. Other innovators to be recognized this year include Comcast, DLA Piper, Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States, and Planned Parenthood of Maryland. For a complete list of winners, visit www.TheDailyRecord.com. All innovators will be profiled in a special magazine that will be inserted into the Oct. 17 issue of The Daily Record.

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