Future Pharmacist Named Schweitzer Fellow

Emily Keeler

Kriss Petrovskis Kriss Petrovskis, a rising third-year Doctor of Pharmacy student at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy, has been named a 2013-14 Columbus-Athens Schweitzer Fellow. He is one of thirteen fellows who will spend the next year addressing health disparities and social determinants of health.

Petrovskis’ project will be focusing on blood pressure management and education for the underserved and uninsured people of Greater Columbus through the Helping Hands Health and Wellness Center. Located in Northern Columbus, the clinic provides medical care and social services to uninsured and underserved adults.

“The patients here are extremely grateful for the care we provide and in most cases they would not have otherwise received care,” said Petrovskis. “The people who work here at the clinic are very dedicated to the mission of Helping Hands.”

Kriss PetrovskisAlong with Petrovskis, a team of volunteer student pharmacists from Ohio State will provide blood pressure education to patients at Helping Hands. In addition to these valuable services, the program is aiming to extend education to the patients’ homes.

“We are actually hoping to provide patients with blood pressure monitors to take with them. A lot of the patients who come to the clinic are uninsured and cannot afford even the most inexpensive monitors,” said Petrovskis. “While we might not see someone for six months, we want them to be able to check their numbers at home to see how things such as diet or exercise can affect their blood pressure.”

College of Pharmacy clinical assistant professor, Anna Haas-Gehres, PharmD, will serve as Petrovskis’ academic mentor while Joyce Bourgault, MSSA, executive director of Helping Hands, will be his site mentor.

In 2011, Petrovskis earned his undergraduate degree in physiology from Michigan State University. He is from Dexter, Michigan.

The 13 Columbus-Athens Fellows will join approximately 220 other 2013-14 Schweitzer Fellows working at 13 program sites, 12 in the U.S. and one in Lambaréné, Gabon at the site of The Albert Schweitzer Hospital. Upon completion of their Fellowship year, the fellows will become Schweitzer Fellows for Life.