Senator Matt Dolan visits with College of Pharmacy students to discuss provider status

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April 17, 2018

Senator Dolan group photo
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The Ohio State Advocacy Collaboration, a new pharmacy student organization that advocates for the profession, recently hosted Senator Matt Dolan (R-Chagrin Falls) to discuss his sponsorship of Senate Bill 265 (SB 265) on Thursday, April 12. As the profession of pharmacy evolves, College of Pharmacy students are taking an active role in working with lawmakers and stakeholders to encourage an expanded role for pharmacists as part of the health care team. Senator Dolan’s visit allowed students an opportunity to hear from a lawmaker first hand and to ask questions about passing the bill.

Fifteen student organizations are involved in the Ohio State Advocacy Collaboration, working with Jennifer Rodis, clinical professor and assistant dean of outreach and engagement.

“The collaboration was created with the hopes to educate students about the importance of advocacy in the profession and creating a united voice to impact our future,” said Vyishali Dharbhamalla, third year PharmD student and founding member of the collaboration. “If we as future pharmacists do not advocate for our profession, no one will.”

As one of their first efforts, Dharbhamalla wanted to plan an event that related to current legislation, providing a different perspective to students. With this in mind, the collaboration invited Senator Dolan to speak with students about SB 265. The bill introduces provider status at the state level, formally recognizing pharmacists as health care providers in Ohio law. His bill seeks to expand the role of pharmacist beyond their traditional roots and makes the case for why the provider definitions and insurance law should match the current role of pharmacists in patient care.

“We know health care is changing constantly, and the profession of pharmacy is not excluded,” said Senator Dolan. “This bill will help break down the barriers that pharmacists have when it comes to providing patients with the best care possible.”

Thank you Senator Dolan for introducing legislation that recognizes pharmacists as providers and taking time to speak with our students.