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What’s on your mind heading into 2018?

There are just under 3 weeks left in 2017, and I want to hear what’s troubling you and what you’re excited about as 2018 approaches.

My editorial in the July 2017 issue of Pharmacy Today, “The pain of being a pharmacist,” got a big response, and I heard from a lot of you. Thank you to all who took the time to call, write, or speak to me in person.

I encourage all of you to keep reaching out to me—or any of us at APhA—to share what’s on your mind. You can email, post here on pharmacist.com using the Engage platform, tweet to us @pharmacists, or post on our Facebook page.

These are ongoing and developing conversations, and I will have plenty more to say about these topics in the future. But today, I hope you’ll share some of your thoughts with me. By addressing pharmacists’ pain points, we will collectively drive our profession forward.

Have quotas affected your patients or practice? How about limits on initial fills? What kinds of concerns are you hearing from patients? Are your pain patients getting what they need? Are your patients able to afford their medications? Are you aware of your patient safety organization (PSO)? How are you balancing patient care with phone calls and paperwork? How are you managing stress?

I also want to hear about what’s got you feeling optimistic. Are you planning any activities in your community? Launching any new patient care services? Forming relationships with the other health care providers in your area?

Will you be reaching out to your elected officials to advocate for yourselves and your patients before the end of the year or in 2018? I hope you will! Attaining federal provider status recognition for pharmacists under Medicare Part B by passing the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act (H.R. 592/S. 109) continues to be APhA’s highest priority. Write, call, e-mail, visit, and invite your representatives to your practice setting to see what we do for patients and communities firsthand. Visit www.pharmacistsprovidecare.com to find out more.

I look forward to a year-round dialogue with all of you. I am inspired by your dedication to patient care, and I trust you to take an active role to fight for the health of your patients and communities.

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