MPhA News

Small Doses

December 21, 2018
News from MPhA
MPhA Events
National News
Minnesota News

News from MPhA

Mission Moment:

Engaged Participation at MPhA/GRAPh Town Hall

About a dozen people joined us in Grand Rapids for last week’s MPhA/GRAPh Town Hall. Many thanks to speaker Eric Johnson, associate professor at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences; to MPhA President Jason Varin for leading the town hall portion of the program; to hosts Heather Bibeau and Sara Elioff of Bigfork Valley Hospital & Clinics; and to Novo Nordisk for sponsorship of the program!

Do you have news to share about MPhA members and their achievements? Help us spread the news about the good work that our members are doing across Minnesota! Send material to Communication Director Laurie Pumper at

Happy Holidays from MPhA!

Happy Holidays

The staff and Board of Directors of the Minnesota Pharmacists Association wish all of our members a holiday season filled with joy and time to rest and recharge for the new year. The MPhA office will be closed on Dec. 24 and 25; although the office will be open Dec. 26-28 and on Dec. 31, many staff members are taking vacation during the holidays to spend time with family; thank you for your patience if it takes longer than usual for us to respond to requests. Small Doses and our events newsletter will be on hiatus next week.

Alliance for Patient Medication Safety

MPhA Events

Register Now! 2019 Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day

February 5, 2019 • Best Western Plus Capitol Ridge, St. Paul

Are you ready to make a difference to advocate for your professional interests and for pharmacy’s interests to advance patient care? Come to Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day and learn how! 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!

Friend of Pharmacy Rep. Roz Peterson (R-56B) will open the day with insights from her decade serving as a legislator and interacting with colleagues as she moved pharmacy and other issues forward. Roz will provide a view from the inside of the Capitol and share tips for how to engage with your legislator for the maximum impact. We’ll celebrate her achievements as she is bestowed with the Friend of Pharmacy Award from the Minnesota pharmacy and retailer community.

Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day is the one annual event that represents the voice of all pharmacy settings in Minnesota for legislators, the governor and other policy makers! 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. The day will feature a morning session, afternoon at the Capitol and an evening networking reception and program, complete with meals throughout the day and more than 5 hours of continuing education! This year we are back on the Capitol grounds at the Best Western Capitol Ridge with complimentary parking and within an easy walk of all your meetings.

The Minnesota Pharmacy Alliance, MPhA, MSHP, the Minnesota Retailers Association and the Minnesota Grocers Association look forward to seeing you there!

Register Online

MPhA Virtual Coffee Break: Pharmacists’ Role in Public Health — Battling STIs

January 16, 2019 • Online Webinar

In this multidisciplinary, collaborative presentation, we will discuss Expedited Partner Therapy (EPT) and its use as a public health tool in fighting bacterial sexually transmitted infection (STI) rates. EPT is recommended by the CDC and is allowed by the state of Minnesota. We will discuss successes and opportunities for pharmacy and pharmacists to support this proven intervention.

Register Online


Our speakers will be Daniel Jude, PharmD, clinical pharmacy specialist with TrellisRx, and Candy Hadsall, RN, MA, with the Minnesota Department of Health.

Registration Fees

The cost is $25 for non-members. MPhA pharmacist members, pharmacy technician members and student members may attend at no cost.

‘Intense’ Friday Again Highlights Exciting Expo Agenda

Midwest Pharmacy Expo

Join pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and student pharmacists from across the Midwest for the region’s premier live continuing pharmacy education event. This year’s Expo features an agenda packed with timely and import CPE topics, plus a few new wrinkles. Reminder: MPhA members qualify for member rates at this conference!

16.75 hrs of CPE for Pharmacists

Friday features Clinically Intensive Workshops with high-level clinical programming designed for pharmacists with advanced certifications or those interested in obtaining certification.

On Expo Saturday, choose sessions from four tracks — Continuity of Care, Professionalism, Provider Readiness, and Hot Topics — covering topics like USP 800, point of care testing, cardiology, and professional burnout.

As always, Expo will wrap on Sunday with two traditional favorites — New Drug Update and Gamechangers — sandwiching a pharmacy law session on HIPAA and electronic messaging.

Connect with pharmacists and pharmacy technicians from across nine Midwestern states, plus hear from experts from across the country!

See the full Expo agenda and register at

Save the Dates: MPhA Events

April 4

MSHP/MPhA Joint CE Town Hall
St. Cloud Area

May 6-9, 2019

U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Officers Foundation Conference

June 12, 2019

MPhA Leadership Summit and House of Delegates Meeting
Midland Hills Country Club, St. Paul

Minnesota News

U of M Researcher Finds that Vaping Has Skyrocketed among Teens

From KARE-11, Dec. 12: Alarming results in the annual study that tracks chemical use by teens find one in five high school seniors has vaped nicotine in the last 30 days. The numbers have doubled since just last year, the largest single year-to-year increase of any chemical since 1975. Irina Stepanov of the University of Minnesota researches tobacco products, and the numbers alarm her.

Stepanov says although it is not yet proven whether e-cigarettes cause cancer, there is evidence they are hazardous. "We don't understand the risks, long-term risks associated with exclusive electronic cigarette use. But there's a chance there are some long-term health consequences," she said.

Read the Article

National News

Medicare Part D Opioid Edits Take Effect January 1

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized new opioid policies for Medicare drug plans starting on Jan. 1, 2019. The new policies include improved safety edits when opioid prescriptions are dispensed at the pharmacy and drug management programs for patients determined to be at risk for misuse or abuse of opioids or other frequently abused medications. Don’t be caught by surprise!

Here are just a few of the changes:

Opioid Safety Edit

  • Limits new patients to 7 day supply (hard edit)

DUR Edits

  • Limits 90 MME per day (soft edit-can possibly be overridden at the pharmacy)
  • Opioid and Benzo edit (soft edit)
  • Duplicate long-acting opioid edit (soft edit)

Download information now so that you are ready for the new year.

U.S. Surgeon General Declares Vaping among Youth an Epidemic

From National Public Radio website, accessed Dec. 18: U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams has taken the unusual step of issuing an advisory about the dangers of electronic cigarette use among the nation’s teens. The surgeon general's advisory called on parents and teachers to educate themselves about the variety of e-cigarettes and to talk with children about their dangers.

Get More Information

FDA Recommends Safer Alternatives to OTCs for Teething Pain

Teething may be a painful experience for children. But soothing children’s gums with prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) medications or teething jewelry can be dangerous. This also applies to children with special needs who may use teething jewelry for sensory stimulation. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends these safer alternatives. Learn more by watching this video and reading this Consumer Update.