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Minnesota Pharmacist Journal - Winter 2018
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Message from the Interim Executive Director

By Marsha Millonig

Happy New Year! I want to begin 2018 with a focus on MPhA’s mission to serve Minnesota pharmacists to advance patient care and remind members of President Aytay’s themes for our leadership year to support that mission. These are:

  • Developing Future Leaders
  • Collaborating with Stakeholders
  • Advancing Pharmacy Practice

I believe 2018 holds great promise for MPhA and its members, the pharmacy profession and the patients we serve in keeping with these themes.

Top of mind is the kick-off to the 2018 Legislative Session and the tremendous collaboration that is taking place on pharmacy’s advocacy agenda through the Pharmacy Advocacy Task Force (PATF) under the leadership of Rachel Root and Jill Strykowski. The addition of lobbyist Buck Humphrey to the team has given us great focus and an intensive agenda for the session; we have spent countless hours meeting with stakeholders and moving our agenda forward. MPhA is addressing numerous other issues outside that agenda that impact members, including many reimbursement issues, pharmacists as mental health providers and pharmacist medication administration. We appreciate your continued calls and emails about what is happening in your areas and crafting strategy to address the issues and your grassroots activity when we call in order to move the needle on these issues.

I hope you’ll consider supporting the Pharmacy Advocacy Fund, which is how MPhA will pay its share of the lobbyist in 2018. As fellow members of MPhA, I know you also have a vested interest in the health of our Minnesota communities and all that pharmacists can do to add to the health of our communities. Although advocacy work has always been important to us, we do not have the resources in our operating budget and we must raise these additional funds to devote specifically to these contracted advocacy efforts. We pledge that funds raised through this campaign will be specifically allocated to our legislative and advocacy efforts. Click here to contribute today.

While supporting the advocacy fund is important, so is contributing to PharmPAC (pharmacy’s political action committee), which provides funding to both the House and Senate Democratic and Republican Caucuses and key candidates in health and policy committees that will support pharmacy’s patient care agenda on the Hill. We’ve recently sent appeals in this regard to all pharmacists in Minnesota. Contributions play a significant role in electing and supporting pharmacy-friendly legislators who understand the importance of pharmacists and pharmacies. These legislators are willing to author bills we need and vote for our issues in committee meetings and in legislative sessions. Read more.

I hope you are making plans to participate in Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day with our partners the Minnesota Society of Health-System Pharmacists (MSHP), the Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA) and the Minnesota Grocers Association (MGA). I invite you to read Michelle Aytay’s column in this issue about 2018 Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day.

We anticipate another record-breaker and are so pleased to be right at the Capitol, within easy walking distance of all appointments. With our aggressive advocacy agenda, it is critical that all pharmacists, student pharmacists and other pharmacy professionals get involved and speak up for the issues. Even if you have never talked with, called or written your legislators before, this event will give you the tools you need to do so! Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day is the one annual event that represents the voice of all pharmacy settings in Minnesota! It is your opportunity to learn about the issues, gain the tools you need to advocate, and network with colleagues and the policymakers who will be supporting pharmacy’s issues. In addition to the PATF and the MPhA Public Affairs Committee, I’d like to thank Pharmaceutical Care Leadership Residents Kaity Kuske, Anjoli Punjabi, Natalie Roy and Stephanie Swanson for their ongoing leadership in many phases of the event, including guiding the appointment process working with MPSA Policy Advocacy Liaisons Kyler Anderson and Sarah Patton. It takes a village, and we are lucky to have such a great one!

These efforts surrounding advocacy truly reflect President Aytay’s themes for this year: developing leaders, collaborating with stakeholders and advancing pharmacy practice. Why? To help the patients we serve.

I hope you’ll join your colleagues in creating more MPhA Mission Moments by living what Vice Speaker Alison Knutson challenged all of us to do at the 2016 Leadership Summit and House of Delegates “Choose it. Do it. Share it.”

We have a chance to make a major positive impact on patient care and the profession in 2018. Are you ready to join us in making that happen?


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