Online Program

Student pharmacist in-language services: Targeting an unmet need to impact hepatitis B management in Asian Pacific Islanders

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 11:30 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.

Christina Madison, Pharm.D., BCACP, AAHIVP, College of Pharmacy, Roseman University of Health Sciences, Henderson, NV
Mark Decerbo, Pharm.D., BCPS, BCNSP, College of Pharmacy, Roseman University of Health Sciences, Henderson, NV
Aurora Wong, JD, HepB Free Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Chronic Hepatitis B (CHB) is a global health issue, with approximately 1 in 20 people worldwide afflicted. Asian-Pacific Islanders (API) are disproportionately affected, comprising less than 5% of the US population, yet accounting for over half of all CHB cases. Language barriers can prevent this population from receiving adequate education, screening, and ultimately treatment. Limited availability of medical translation services to this patient population can impact access, desire, and perceived need for care.

HepBFreeLasVegas (HBFLV) provides Hepatitis B education, screening, and referral services for medical management, with an emphasis on APIs. Roseman University College of Pharmacy (RUCOP) partnered with HBFLV to provide student-pharmacists as in-language (Mandarin/Cantonese/Thai/Vietnamese) speaking volunteers to the API population of Las Vegas in order to target an unmet need.

A needs assessment meeting with HBFLV and RUCOP clinical faculty members identified and categorized in-language speaking student-pharmacist volunteers by language type. Opportunities to assist with both community Hepatitis B screening events and one-on-one specialized physician appointments were coordinated by RUCOP faculty. Identified student-pharmacists were matched by language to specific volunteer opportunities in order to meet the needs of HBFLV.

Out of a total enrollment of 418 student-pharmacists, 145 (34%) of the student body self-identified as API, with 31 (22%) volunteering in-language services. Through this collaboration with HBFLV, student-pharmacists provided 509 total patient encounters at 6 separate community events, which lead to 64 of patients being vaccinated, 28 identified with CHB, and 23 entering into care.

Student-pharmacists are uniquely qualified to provide both medical knowledge and therapeutic relevance of CHB by addressing a culturally sensitive topic and public health challenge in a linguistically appropriate context. Following the CDC's endorsement of public health partnerships with pharmacists in chronic disease management, this targeted intervention can serve as a model to improve vaccination rates, adherence to therapy, and overall improved patient outcomes.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify a potential role for student pharmacists in the team based management of Chronic Hepatitis B Describe the potential impact of implementing a collaborative relationship between Colleges of Pharmacy and a Community Non-Profit Organization

Keyword(s): Asian and Pacific Islander, Pharmacists

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am involved in the care of patients with CHB through my role as a clinical pharmacy faculty member who practices at the county health department, as well as through my role as President of the Nevada Public Health Association. I was directly involved in the implementation of the described work in the abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.