All PharmD students at the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy must complete a research project as part of their graduation requirements. This repository collection contains the abstracts of these projects, and the full-text of projects that students have opted to make available.


Contact Jennifer Martin, Librarian & Clinical Instructor, Pharmacy Practice and Science, for more information about the student research projects in this collection.

Recent Submissions

  • Challenges and Limitations of the COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution in Arizona Federally Qualified Health Centers

    Hall-Lipsy, Elizabeth; Boucher, Brandon; Maloney, Patric; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    The rollout of COVID-19 vaccines was a massive undertaking for Arizona’s healthcare providers. Clinics all over the state were tasked with ordering, storing, distributing, and administering the vaccines to protect Arizonans against the COVID-19 virus. Safety net clinics in particular were integral for getting the vaccine to the most vulnerable members of the population, both in urban and rural areas. Challenges faced by these clinics need to be quantified in order for effective support to be given in the future. Specific Aims: 1. To compare and contrast the identified challenges and opportunities described by FQHC clinics during the COVID-19 vaccine roll out in early 2021. 2. To make recommendations for future best practices in the event of another global pandemic.
  • Effect of a Virtual Game, "Name That Band" on Elders' and PharmD Students' Feelings of Social Isolation During COVID-19

    Campbell, Ashley; Lee, Jeannie; Weygint, Alison; Whittington, Brooke; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To determine the effects of playing a virtual game, “Name That Band,” on St. Luke’s Home elders’ and the University of Arizona (UA) Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) students’ feelings of social isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. To compare elders’ and PharmD students’ feelings of social isolation and loneliness pre-pandemic and before and after playing the game together and to assess which factors of the game make them feel more socially engaged. Methods: Questionnaires were administered before and after a virtual game to residents at St. Luke’s Home and PharmD students at the UA R. Ken Coit College of Pharmacy. Participants were asked about their mood before COVID-19 and pre- and post-game, as well as their social interactions and feelings of loneliness using the Modified UCLA Three-Item Loneliness Scale, which assesses a composite score of lack of companionship, feelings of being left out, and isolation. Results: Fifteen elders and eleven students participated in the game (n=26). All participants completed the pre-game survey and 25 completed the post-game survey. The elders reported a decreased total UCLA Loneliness Scale score post-game compared to pre-game (p=0.020). The students reported an increased total UCLA Loneliness Scale score during the pandemic than before COVID-19 (p=0.017). More elders and students felt ‘happy’ post-game compared with before the pandemic and pre-game. Playing a virtual game together helped elders and students feel more socially engaged. Conclusions: Virtual game social interventions decreased feelings of isolation and increased engagement for older adults and PharmD students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Patterns of healthcare expenditures among older United States adults with pain and different perceived health status

    Axon, Rhys; Kamel, Anisa; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    The objective of this study was to assess the pattern of healthcare expenditures among United States (U.S.) adults aged ≥ 50 years with pain and annual total positive healthcare expenditures with different levels of perceived health. The study used the 2018 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey data. Unadjusted and adjusted linear regression models were used to compare logarithmically transformed total healthcare expenditures between those with excellent, very good, good, and fair/poor health. The a priori alpha value was 0.05. The study included 5123 U.S. adults aged ≥50 with self‐reported pain (excellent = 8.9%, very good = 28.3%, good = 36.2%, fair/poor = 26.6%). In adjusted analyses, compared to fair/poor health, those with excellent health had the greatest adjusted reduction in expenditures (55% lower), followed by very good health (36.5% lower) and good health (24.9% lower). In conclusion, total positive healthcare expenditures were comparatively lower among those with better perceived health status for older (≥ 50 years) U.S. adults with pain that interfered with normal work in the past four weeks.
  • Assessing the Impact of an Advanced Clinical Decision Support System on Medication Safety and Hospital Readmissions in an Innovative Transitional Care Model: A Pilot Study

    Bingham, Jennifer; Baugham, Lindsey; Hilaneh, Andriana; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Abstract: Background: Adverse drug events and inappropriate use of medications lead to hospitalizations, medication-related morbidity, and mortality. This study examined whether a novel medication risk prediction tool, the MedWise Risk ScoreTM, was associated with medication safety-related problem (MRP) identification and whether integrating into an existing innovative transitions of care (TOC) program could decrease readmissions. (2) Methods: This retrospective comparator group study assessed patients discharged from a hospital in southern Arizona between January and December 2020. Participants were included in the study if they were 18 years of age or 19 older, referred to the pharmacist for TOC services, and received a pharmacist consultation within one-week post discharge. Patients were categorized into two groups: 1) medication safety review (MSR)-TOC service (intervention), or 2) existing innovative TOC program (control). (3) Results: Of 164 participants, most were male (57%) and were between 70 - 79 years of age. Overall, there were significantly more DDI MRPs identified per patient in the intervention vs control group for those who were readmitted (3.7±1.5 vs 0.9±0.6, p<0.001) and those who were not readmitted (2±1.3 vs 1.3±1.2, p=0.0120). Furthermore, of those who were readmitted, the average number of identified MRPs per patient was greater in the intervention group compared to the control (6.3 vs 2.5 respectively, p>0.05). Relative to control, readmission frequency was 30% lower in the treatment group; however, there was insufficient power to detect significant differences between groups. (4) Conclusion: Integration of a medication risk prediction tool into this existing TOC model identified more DDI MRPs compared to the previous innovative TOC program, which lends evidence to support its ability to prevent readmissions. Future work is warranted to demonstrate the longitudinal impact of this intervention in a larger sample size.
  • Assessing Readiness of Community Pharmacists to Identify Intimate Partner Violence

    Hall-Lipsy, Elizabeth; Arellano, Daisy; Sharp, Allison; Towers, Margaret; Masih, Austin; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To characterize and describe pharmacist reported barriers to identifying patients experiencing Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). To examine the relationship between various demographics and community pharmacists’ willingness and ability to identify patients experiencing intimate partner violence in their community practice. Methods: The study was a descriptive cross-sectional study that used data obtained through an online questionnaire of community pharmacists. All the community pharmacy-based preceptors registered with the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy currently practicing were included. Main Results: Gender and education level were not a significant factor in pharmacists' perceived knowledge about IPV. For actual knowledge, regarding gender, there were significant differences in terms of females correctly identifying depression as a warning sign of patient having been abused by their partner (p = 0.04), while those with a PharmD were able to identify anxiety as a warning sign compared to B.S. (p = 0.02). Most pharmacists screened agreed with the statements that they were simply too busy to assist on multidisciplinary teams that manage IPV cases (N=12, 60.0%), agreed that screening for IPV may offend those who were screened (N=15, 68.2%), and were not able to gather the information necessary to identify IPV as causes for medication utilization (N=11, 64.7%). Conclusions: The survey was beneficial in determining that IPV training and higher education is integral in identifying IPV and helping victims of IPV. More IPV training is needed by pharmacists, but this study is an important steppingstone in evaluating the necessity of training for pharmacists to assist patients who are facing IPV.
  • Evaluating Prophylactic Antibiotic Use in Facial Fractures

    Erstad, Brian; Kopp, Brian; Dumas, Steven; Hrapczak, Brandon; Wilson, James; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To evaluate the effectiveness of prophylactic antibiotic administration in preventing surgical site infections in patients with traumatic facial fractures. Methods: A retrospective cohort review of patients admitted to Banner University Medical Center Tucson Trauma Service with traumatic facial injuries was conducted. Patient records were evaluated for their baseline demographics, receipt of operative repair, antibiotic administration, and incidence of infection. Results: Of 733 patients included in the study there were a total of 20 infections. Only five of these infections were of the head and or neck, with negligible differences between patients who received or did not recive antibitoics. Conclusions: Antibiotic prophylaxis in patients with traumatic facial fractures does not appear to reduce the incidence of head and or neck surgical site infections.
  • How well does the curriculum prepare students for the NAPLEX? A survey of recent graduate opinions

    Cooley, Janet; Altamirano, Alejandra; Althobaiti, Ahlam; Guerrero, Oreana; Mahdi, Neda; Nguyen, Sang; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To obtain recent graduate perceptions on curricular preparation for the NAPLEX. Recent graduates reported on areas of the curriculum that need improvement in order to better prepare students for NAPLEX testing. Methods: A questionnaire distributed to University of Arizona College of Pharmacy Classes of 2019, 2020, and 2021 collected data reflecting on how prepared alumni felt for the NAPLEX based on each domain of the curriculum and included questions about question types and specific topics. Additionally, questions asked about the amount of time dedicated to studying for the NAPLEX, the resources that helped prepare them for it, any pharmacy related work outside of curricular requirements, the effort put into the NAPLEX and an optional free-response question assessing special situations that may have helped or hindered performance. Results: Questionnaires were completed by 55 alumni (15% response rate). In the primary findings of this study, the majority of alumni respondents spent more than 7 weeks in preparation for the NAPLEX. Most respondents used NAPLEX study books and had jobs during school related to pharmacy outside of the curriculum. Alumni respondents tended to feel most prepared for pharmacology and pharmacotherapeutic sections of the exam and least prepared for pharmaceutical calculations. Conclusion: Statistical significance was not found among most of the data although the study findings did show that students would benefit from using NAPLEX study books, preparing for the NAPLEX 7 or more weeks in advance, putting more study emphasis on calculations, and having a pharmacy related job.
  • Quality of Critical Care Clinical Practice Guidelines Involving Pharmacotherapy Recommendations

    Erstad, Brian; Edwards, Christopher; Gardiner, Jordan; Lam, Jonathan; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To assess the quality of critical care clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) involving pharmacotherapy recommendations. Methods: A systematic electronic search was performed using PubMed, Medline, and Embase for critical care CPGs published between 2012-2022 and involving pharmacotherapy recommendations. The Appraisal of Guidelines for Research & Evaluation II (AGREE II) instrument was employed to appraise CPG quality with independent assessment by two appraisers. Results: Twenty-one CPGs were evaluated. The number of recommendations in each guideline ranged from 2 to 250 with a total of 1604 recommendations. The number of strong recommendations in each guideline ranged from 0-31 with a total of 116 strong recommendations, or 7.23% of total recommendations. There was at least one pharmacist author in 9 (43%) of guidelines. The domains with highest quality scores were scope and purpose (0.88, 95%CI 0.85-0.92), rigor of development (0.80, 95%CI 0.77-0.83), clarity of presentation (0.84,95%CI 0.81-0.87), and editorial independence (0.86, 95%CI 0.79-0.94), while those with the lowest scores were stakeholder involvement (0.69, 95%CI 0.63-0.75) and applicability (0.49, 95%CI 0.43-0.55). Involvement of a pharmacist in CPGs was associated with significantly higher scoring for stakeholder involvement (P=0.0356). Conclusions: The quality of critical care CPGs involving pharmacotherapy continues to improve based on increases in several domain scores over time when comparing the results of our study to previous investigations. However, there remain concerns related to applicability (i.e. advice or tools for putting recommendations into practice) and stakeholder involvement (i.e. individuals from all relevant groups). It is important to involve pharmacists in CPGs with pharmacotherapy recommendations.
  • Pharmacist-led Annual Wellness Visit (AWV) improves gaps in care closure and reimbursement from health plans in a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC)

    Bertsch, Matthew; Mendez, Monique; Pham, Diana; Schrunk, Madison; Tam, Jacky; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: Compare the gaps in care addressed and/or closed per patient following a clinical pharmacist led AWV and primary care provider led AWV. Methods: Sun Life employees collected data from the electronic health records (EHR) and the health plan lists. The clinical pharmacy team reviewed their health plan’s participant list and scheduled those patients for a visit with either the provider or clinical pharmacist. Clinical pharmacists and medical assistants addressed and/or closed gaps in care and updated a spreadsheet with the outcome of the visit. Results: Total random sample size was 100 patients for this project with 50 patients for both the pharmacist and primary care provider groups (PCP). 92% gaps in care were addressed by the pharmacist group, while 66% gaps in care were addressed by the PCP group. The average number of interventions addressed was 0.82 (SD = 0.93) interventions in the PCP group and f 1.34 (SD = 1.66) interventions in the pharmacist led group, this difference was significant (p = 0.0283). Overall, AWV performed by the pharmacist group led to a higher percentage of gaps addressed in comparison to the PCP group. Conclusions: Pharmacist led annual wellness visits addressed more gaps in care compared to PCP led annual wellness visits.
  • Patient Outcomes After Standardization of Argatroban Workflow

    O'Connell, Colleen; Eribes, Emily; Gunther, Luke; Meyer, Sammantha; Owen, Charles; Poirier, RJ; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a standardized argatroban workflow by comparing patient demographics, lab results, and outcomes before and after implementation. Specifically, the aim of the workflow was to increase correct initial dosing for argatroban, decrease number of dose changes, and reduce in-patient mortality. Methods: The retrospective analysis consisted of collecting data from the patient’s electronic health record after argatroban therapy. Data were collected using a RedCap survey and further analyzed using Minitab. There were two different groups, pre-implementation and post-implementation groups. Data were compared to determine if there were any significant differences in demographic characteristics, lab results, days of therapy and dose changes. Results: Our study showed similar demographic characteristics in both groups and did not have any statistical significance (all P values > 0.05). For the rate the correct dose was chosen, there was an absolute reduction of 36% in incorrect dose choice for the standard dosing group. The critically ill dosing group had an absolute reduction of 68%. The incorrect dose chosen for hepatically impaired patients remained similar across both groups. Days on argatroban therapy was 4.46 for Pre and 3.98 for Post. Dose changes Pre-implementation were 3.57 and 4.38 Post (p=0.401). Mortality during hospital stay was 75% pre-implementation and 61% post-implementation. Conclusion: While the results of this study must be interpreted cautiously due to statistical significance and small sample size, standardizing dosing protocol for argatroban may improve dosing decisions and patient outcomes within a tertiary medical center.
  • Antimicrobial Stewardship Program Needs Assessment for Arizona Critical Access Hospitals

    Hall-Lipsy, Elizabeth; Naderi, Mandana; Benares, Shean; Braga, Shienna; Taylor, Eric; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: This study was undertaken to investigate the specific antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) needs amongst the 15 critical access hospitals (CAHs) and two CAH-status applicants in Arizona and evaluate which factors influenced full versus partial implementation of the 7 CDC Core Elements. Methods: This was an IRB-approved, cross-sectional, qualitative and quantitative study examining data gathered from a questionnaire, which was adapted from a similar survey conducted by Doron et al. The survey was student-administered via telephone to an antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) member from Arizona’s CAHs and CAH-status applicants. ASP representatives were recruited by contacting each facility’s inpatient pharmacy. The survey included four sections consisting of Likert-scale, multiple choice, and open-response questions that evaluated demographics and ASP practices and protocols if it is present. Results: All representatives surveyed were pharmacists who either led, co-led, or were members of their hospital’s ASP. The majority (70%) were pharmacy directors at their respective facilities. Hospitals that dedicated 20 or more hours per week to antimicrobial stewardship were more likely to report full implementation of the Core Elements (p=0.035). The most frequently reported ASP- related challenge faced by respondents was a lack of ID expertise (31.6%). Conclusions: Due to the budgetary and staffing constraints in rural hospitals, it is often difficult to allocate more hours towards AMS efforts. Increasing dedicated AMS time at Arizona’s CAHs could be an important area to target for additional funding and resources in order to allot more time for stewardship activities and increase Core Elements implementation.
  • Temperature Effects on Chronic Lithium Toxicity in Arizona

    Smelski, Geoff; Drabik, Nicole; Yup, Dillon; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aim: To examine the relationship between environmental temperature and the frequency of patients reporting chronic lithium toxicity to emergency departments in Arizona. Methods: This study is a retrospective study that analyzed chronic lithium toxicity cases reported to the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center (AZPDIC) via their database Toxsentry. The cases were screened for month and year of patient arrival, serum lithium levels, age, county, symptoms, outcome and pertinent lab markers such as sodium and serum creatinine levels upon arrival. Average ambient temperatures were collected corresponding to month, year, and county via the National Weather Service. Main Results: Chart reviews allowed for 116 patient cases to be included in the analysis. Average age of patients was 51.5 (14.39) years. Average temperature of Arizona was 65.65°F where the collected temperatures were 67.8°F (15.51). The Chi-square test based on the month did not prove to be significant with p=0.25 for 95%. On the other hand, the ambient temperature was found to be statistically significant with p<0.05. Conclusions: There is a correlation between increasing ambient temperatures and frequency of lithium toxicity; however, time of the year does not appear to be correlated with the frequency of Lithium toxicity.
  • Determining Factors Associated with Patient Response to Biologic Therapies in the Treatment of Asthma

    Wagelie-Steffen, Amy; Axon, Rhys; Grace, Chloe; Wylie, Michelle; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To examine the association between biomarkers, laboratory parameters, and patient characteristics, with patient response to a biologic agent: Xolair, Dupixent and Fasenra. Methods: This study used a retrospective cohort design. Patients were included if they have previously taken, or are currently taking, at least one of the biologic medications of interest (Xolair, Dupixent and Fasenra), and had baseline laboratory values on file prior to the start of the agent(s). Demographic and laboratory variables were used as predictors in a multinomial regression model to determine if associations exist between patient-specific characteristics and drug response. Results: Rhinosinusitis, presence of nasal polyps, and smoking status (current or former) were all found to have significant associations with patient drug response. Patients with rhinosinusitis were significantly more likely to respond to Fasenra than to Xolair. Patients with nasal polyps were significantly more likely to respond to Dupixent than Xolair. Smoking status was found to have a dual association. Patients who have, or currently smoke, were significantly more likely to respond to Fasenra, and significantly less likely to respond to Dupixent, when compared to Xolair. Conclusions: Rhinosinusitis, presence of nasal polyps, and smoking status may be useful predictors for biologic drug response in patients with severe asthma. These findings may provide useful content for future studies to interrogate predictors in drug response and help guide healthcare providers to select optimal medication regimens.
  • In Silico Molecular Modeling of Nicotine and InVitro Human Pulmonary Cell Culture

    Mansour, Heidi; Mikhail, Amanda; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To predict properties of nicotine to assess how it will affect in vitro cell growth Methods: Molecular modeling software programs such as Swiss ADME® and ChemDraw® were used to collect physicochemical, pharmacokinetic, and molecular properties of nicotine that contributes to its ability to cross the central nervous system (CNS). A cell viability assay using resazurin was used on an A549 pulmonary lung cancer cell line to assess toxicity using various concentrations of nicotine. Results: Functional groups found in nicotine’s chemical structure along with its chemical properties confirmed its highly lipophilic state to enter the CNS. A resazurin viability assay was performed on the pulmonary cell line called A549 that revealed an increase in cell proliferation of the A549 cell line with higher concentrations of nicotine. Conclusions: Nicotine’s highly basic amine and tertiary amine found in its structure contributes to its ability to enter the CNS. Nicotine increased proliferation of the A549 pulmonary cancer cells with an increase in nicotine concentration that was found to be statistically significant (p<0.005) via one-tailed students t-test.
  • Impact of COVID-19 on patient-pharmacist interaction in a community setting

    Henry, Nicole; Azemawah, Veronica; Weston, Lewis; Ortiz, Destiny; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2022)
    Specific Aims: To explore whether the COVID-19 pandemic affected time patients spent with their community pharmacist, and whether the length and quality of the consultation time impacted the patients’ understanding of their medication and health outcomes. Methods: A questionnaire was administered in person to residents of Western Winds senior living apartments in Tucson, Az. The questionnaire was administered in person by the students conducting this project. Some residents at Western Winds property filled the questionnaire themselves and for those who could not, the students read the questions and answer choices to them and entered the responses on the questionnaire. The questionnaires inquired about residents’ present disease states, previous and new medications started during COVID-19, patient access to and means of receiving medication before and during COVID-19, whether the pandemic affected time present with their pharmacist and understanding of medications, and effect on their overall health. Main Results: Questionnaires were completed by 25 older adult participants. To ensure participant privacy, no demographic or other information that could directly identify the residents was collected in the survey. Thus, the characteristics of study participants cannot be described. Overall, participants reported the amount of time or quality of interaction with their pharmacist was not affected by COVID-19. Those who continued picking up their medicines in-person during the pandemic reported about the same level of safety going to the pharmacy. The main reasons they gave were that they were vaccinated and always wore their masks. Conclusions: The amount and quality of time patients spent with their pharmacist appears similar pre and post pandemic.
  • A Retrospective Descriptive Study Evaluating the Incidence of Acute Hypersensitivity Reactions to Crotalidae Immune F(ab')2 (Equine)

    Lee-Chan, Douglass; Vice, Julianne Noele; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2021)
    Specific Aims: To describe the incidence and severity of acute hypersensitivity reactions in patients receiving F(ab’)2 antivenom (Anavip®) for rattlesnake envenomation. Subjects: Adult patients treated with F(ab’)2 antivenom at two community hospitals in Tucson, Arizona Methods: This was a retrospective descriptive evaluation, with data obtained by chart review of all patients who were treated with F(ab’)2 antivenom from April 2019 to August 2020. Patients over the age of 18 years were included. The primary outcome variable was whether an acute hypersensitivity reaction occurred. Main Results: Twenty-three patients were included in the evaluation (mean age = 58.39; SD 12.68; 35% female; 87% white). An acute hypersensitivity reaction was documented in 2 patients (9.0%). No patients received prophylactic medications. Reactions included a rash and urticaria and were considered mild based on study definitions. One of these patients tolerated continuation of the initial F(ab’)2 infusion as well as an additional dose while the other was started on Fab (CroFab®) as an alternative. The average number of F(ab’)2 vials given for treatment was 14.06 (SD 6.19), with 8 patients requiring at least 20 vials total. Conclusions: The incidence of acute hypersensitivity reactions in patients receiving F(ab’)2 antivenom for rattlesnake envenomation was lower than reported in clinical trials. Additionally, all reactions that occurred were mild in nature. Given the small sample size, further studies are needed to determine the true incidence of these reactions.
  • Identification of Errors Among Electronically Transmitted Prescriptions

    McDaniels, Joanne; Axon, Rhys; Sion, Paul William; Steiner, Cassidy Michelle; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2021)
    Specific Aims: Determine whether or not there is a difference in the time to patient care between correctly written electronic prescriptions and incorrectly written electronic prescriptions. Methods: This observational prospective study will use data obtained from an online survey of community pharmacists licensed by the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy. Participants will be selected using a listserv of pharmacists that are registered with the Arizona Board of Pharmacy. We will further narrow this list down by persons employed at a community pharmacy. Main Results: Questionnaire was completed by 321 pharmacists licensed by the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy who practice in a community setting. According to the data collected, the median time to reach the providers office was 0.5 hours and the median time for the provider to respond was 3 hours. Most frequently (51.7% of the time), this resulted in the patient’s wait time being delayed by more than 4 hours. Conclusions: Errors in electronically transmitted prescriptions led to an increase in time to patient care. There is a difference in time to patient care between correctly written electronic prescriptions and incorrectly written electronic prescriptions.
  • Comparison of self-reported NAPLEX pass rates before and after integration of formal test preparation into curriculum requirements at one College of Pharmacy

    Warholak, Terri; Shelledy, Kristin Marie; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2021)
    Specific Aims. This study assessed the relationship between formal preparation and: participant selfreported North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) pass rates; and student perception of exam preparedness. Methods. This was a descriptive cross-sectional study using electronic questionnaires administered to students from the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy 2019 and 2020 cohorts. Questions were developed to collect data on which RxPrep components students used, their study habits, perceptions of the utility of RxPrep materials, perceived level of preparedness for the NAPLEX, and advice for future students. Results. Survey responses were collected from cohorts 2019 and 2020 from September 2020 to March 2021. 30 responses total were received, 9 from class of 2019 and 21 from class of 2020. There was no significant difference in first-time self-reported pass rates between respondents in the 2019 and 2020 cohorts, with 89% and 100% rates respectively (p=0.120). All respondents successfully passed the NAPLEX, and only one student did not pass on the first attempt. NAPLEX scores ranged from 78 to 130 (mean 98, median 93). Both cohorts reported a significant increase in sense of preparedness after using the RxPrep course (2019 p=0.0186; 2020 p<0.001). There was no significant difference in sense of preparedness between the cohorts either before using RxPrep (p=0.984) or after using RxPrep (p=0.680). Conclusions. Preliminary findings suggest that the RxPrep program is perceived to be beneficial for students preparing for the NAPLEX. This study may benefit from being repeated in future years and/or other pharmacy schools to increase sample size.
  • Transition of dose-adjusted EPOCH therapy into the outpatient healthcare setting, quality and cost considerations under an alternate payment model

    McBride, Ali; Villanueva, Joselyn; Sharif, Atefeh Sheri; Savaya, Sandra; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2021)
    Specific Aims To determine the incidence of adverse effects in inpatient (IP), outpatient (OP), and hybrid inpatient/outpatient (IP/OP) settings for different types of B-cell lymphoma with the same regimen by comparing administration timing of pegfilgrastim for the prevention of febrile neutropenia, as well as determining cost saving opportunities in the outpatient setting. Subjects: Patients included were ages 18 and older, diagnosed with one of the different types of B cell lymphoma, and received DA-EPOCH ± R chemotherapy regimen at Banner University Medical Center- Tucson and associated clinics. Methods This institutional review board approved retrospective study investigated the administration of DA-EPOCH ± R within a single institution in Tucson, Arizona. The database report included the patients’ coded identification; along with their specific demographics, site of administration, side effects during each cycle, dose delays, reason for delays, time of administration for pegfilgrastim. Main Results: A total of 41 patients received 170 cycles of DA-EPOCH ± R. There were a total of 17 (10%) inpatient, 85 (50%) outpatient and 68 (40%) hybrid inpatient/outpatient cycles of DA-EPOCH ± R. The cost savings of the transition to outpatient chemotherapy administration yielded a cost savings of $1,364,250. The highest incidence of adverse effects was febrile neutropenia in all three settings. Conclusions: Transitioning of DA-EPOCH ± R to an outpatient or a hybrid inpatient/outpatient setting can significantly decrease the overall cost of hospital stays and potentially reduce overall cost of therapy for the patients.
  • Impact of virtual improvisation exercises on pharmacy student mood, stress, and energy levels

    Cameron, Caitlin; Vadiei, Nina; Saunders, Cory Jay; Taylor, Harrison Thomas; College of Pharmacy, The University of Arizona (The University of Arizona., 2021)
    Objective: To evaluate the effect virtual improvisation exercises have on student mental health. Methods: A questionnaire was administered via Qualtrics after two virtual improvisation sessions over Zoom during a regularly scheduled class that evaluated key components of mental health. Students in the first year of a four-year Doctor of Pharmacy program attending a large public state university in the Southwest were asked to evaluate what their mood, stress and energy levels were before and after each improvisation session. The questionnaire measured stress and energy levels using a 6-point Likert scale ranging from Very Stressed/Fatigued to Very Relaxed/Energetic. Students were asked to select from five moods, two representing “good” moods, and three representing “bad” moods. Changes in stress and energy levels were compared using a Wilcoxon Signed-Rank Test. Changes in mood were compared via a McNemar’s Test. Results: Questionnaires were completed by 103 students across two days. There was a significant improvement in stress levels (p-value <0.0001 both days), energy levels (p-value <0.0001 both days) and mood (p-value <0.0001, 0.00328, day 1 and day 2 respectively). A total of 81.6% and 82.5% of all students improved at least 1 point on the Likert scale in their stress and energy levels on both days, respectively. A total of 49.5% had an improvement in their mood from bad to good, and 41.7% had no change in their good mood after the improvisation sessions. Conclusion: Improvisational exercises significantly improved pharmacy students’ stress levels, energy levels, and mood.

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