Article Index

HOPA Publications Committee

Bonnie Labdi, PharmD RPh, Chair

Ashley Glode, PharmD BCOP, Vice Chair

George Carro, RPh MS BCOP, Board Liaison

Jayde Bendarik, PharmD BCOP

Megan Bodge, PharmD

Megan Brafford, PharmD BCOP

Morgan E. Culver, PharmD BCOP

Christine Gegeckas, Rph BCOP

Lindsay Hladnik, PharmD BCOP

Lisa Lohr, PharmD BSPharm BCOP BCPS

Katie Long, PharmD 

David Reeves, PharmD BCOP

Lisa Savage, PharmD BCOP BCPS

Alexandra Shillingburg, PharmD

Candice Wenzell, PharmD BCOP

View PDF

Board Update

Scott Soefje, PharmD MBA BCOP FCCP
HOPA President

Annual Meeting Recap

The HOPA annual meeting exceeds expectations every year, and this year was no exception. We topped 1,000 attendees for the first time ever. Holy buckets! As a native Texan and an Austinite, I’m proud that attendees enjoyed a successful annual meeting in our city.

The Programming Committee did another outstanding job. The John G. Kuhn Keynote Lecture was thought-provoking and entertaining. Toby Clark made us consider the footprint we will leave on the profession and the footprint HOPA will leave on health care. The boot camps, concurrent sessions, BCOP sessions, and other educational offerings provided something for everyone.

Every year it gets harder and harder to top the year before. Still, we are already off to a fantastic start for the 2016 Annual Meeting in Atlanta, GA. We have a very special keynote speaker lined up for next year whom I think everyone will be excited about. As teasing as it sounds, you’ll just have to wait until we make the formal announcement.

Strategic Plan

HOPA Past President Mike Vozniak unveiled our new strategic plan at the annual meeting. This plan was developed in early 2015 and will take us through 2020. Like our previous plan, this one comprises four core areas:

     • Professional development
     • Advocacy
     • Research
     • Professional resources and tools.

The purpose of the first three areas is to improve our previous work. We are finding ways to expand our professional development offerings, connect with a wider audience through advocacy, and re-focus our research on demonstrating the value of the pharmacist in the hematology/oncology setting.

We added the fourth area, professional resources and tools, because we want HOPA to expand beyond standards. Although standards will remain a large part of this section, we want to explore HOPA’s potential to aid hematology/oncology pharmacists in their daily practice. Our goal is to become the go-to place for all things related to hematology/oncology pharmacy.

In May, the board approved the final plan including the prioritization of the objectives under each of the four core areas. You will see the new strategic plan posted on the website shortly.

BCOP Proposal

HOPA is pleased to announce that the Board of Pharmacy Specialties (BPS) has approved HOPA as a provider of Board Certified Oncology Pharmacist (BCOP) recertification professional development for a 7-year cycle that will begin January 1, 2016.

HOPA’s program will provide 38 hours per year of opportunities for BCOPs to address and refresh their knowledge on topics essential to practice and earn the required 100 continuing education hours over a 7-year period. The comprehensive approach will address the four domains of oncology pharmacy specialty practice as defined by BPS, and assess participants’ knowledge and problem-solving skills pertinent to the application of the scope of material in each of the four domains.

HOPA’s proposal is built around four core professional development components:

     • Oncology Pharmacy Updates Course
     • Live BCOP recertification programming (expansion of our current 6-hour annual conference offerings)
     • Self-study modules
     • Emerging Issues in Oncology webinar series.

Much more information will be forthcoming in the weeks ahead, including opportunities for members to serve as volunteers on the BCOP Recertification Committee or provide expertise as speakers. Please look for those announcements in the next few days as we will be ramping up quickly to begin programming in January 2016.

The American College of Clinical Pharmacy and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (a combined program) also were approved to provide BCOP recertification offerings.

Hill Day

As part of our advocacy agenda in our strategic plan, the board and the Health Policy Committee had our first HOPA Hill Day on April 29. We went to Capitol Hill to meet Representatives and Senators from Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Washington. In attendance were Mike Vozniak, Jill Rhodes, Heidi Finnes, Ryan Bookout, Lisa Holle, Helen Marshall, Niesha Griffith, David DeRemer, Kellie Weddle, and Jolynn Session, and I, along with staff from HOPA and the District Policy Group.

We went to promote the role of the hematology/oncology pharmacist and to discuss the value we bring to patients. We also asked for sup- port for H.R. 592/S. 314: Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act. This act would allow pharmacists to bill for clinical services. We also promoted oral chemotherapy access, supporting parity between oral and IV chemo while describing how specialty tier co-pays hurt patients. Our message seemed well-received, and our advocacy is starting to be noticed in Washington, DC. As a small group, we still have a long road ahead, but we’re off to a great start.

Each member of HOPA can make a significant impact in advocacy. Take the time now to contact your senators and local representatives and ask them to support H.R. 592 or S. 314. Every time you reach out to Congress, our voice gets louder and our message gets closer to being heard and accepted.

Fellow Program

The call for nominations/applications for the Fellow of the Hematology Oncology Pharmacy Association (FHOPA) has gone out. We are looking for those individuals who have made a lasting impact on HOPA. This inaugural class will be introduced in Atlanta in March 2016. If you know someone who you think deserves this qualification, please submit a nomination.

The List

So far I have talked about what we’ve been doing, and I want to end today with what we have planned. In my opening remarks in Austin, I stated I have a list of items that I have been collecting. Many of the things on my list are areas we are already working on; some are ideas that we should start on but will take more than a year to accomplish; and some are just ideas that we should keep in mind. Like many to-do lists, this one is constantly changing. As I check off “submit BCOP proposal to BPS,” I add many additional items that will be required should the proposal be accepted. As we meet with one external organization, we identify two more that may be potential partners with HOPA. And as we promote our healthcare agenda, we ask ourselves how to help our members meet the challenges of being a provider should that bill pass. We will be doing an internal review of the organization, but more on that next time. We are working to expand our influence by partnering with an increasing number of cancer or pharmacy organizations—this will be the topic of the winter update. We will be looking for big ideas, developing new programming, taking a leadership role in oral chemotherapy, and continuing to deliver the quality products you have come to expect from HOPA.

We will continue to provide quality professional development programming, so don’t forget about the quarterly webinars, journal club, and the practice management symposium in September. We are becoming a strong voice for cancer care in Washington, and external organizations now seek out our opinions. We are talking with LiveSTRONG, Oncology Nursing Society, American Society of Clinical Oncology, and other like-minded organizations. Our call for research proposals has gone out. We are exploring new areas, have a new strategic plan, and are expanding our influence in care for cancer patients. The board, committees, task forces, and work groups are energized to push HOPA to new heights. The coming year will be a busy one for HOPA, but I know we are moving in the right direction.