HOPA 2019–2020 Publications Committee
Megan Dillaman, PharmD BCOP, Editor
Lisa M. Cordes, PharmD BCOP BCACP, Associate Editor
Christan M. Thomas, PharmD BCOP, Associate Editor
LeAnne Kennedy, PharmD BCOP CPP FHOPA, Board Liaison
Jessica Auten, PharmD BCOP BCPS
Andrea Clarke, PharmD
Jeff Engle, PharmD MS
Sarah E. Hoffman, PharmD BCOP
Sidney V. Keisner, PharmD BCOP
Bonnie A. Labdi, PharmD BCOP
Chung-Shien Lee, PharmD BCOP BCPS
Renee K. McAlister, PharmD BCOP
Heather N. Moore, PharmD BCOP
Jennifer S. Philippon, PharmD candidate
Kendall Shultes, PharmD BCOP
Andrew Tiemann, PharmD candidate
Candice M. Wenzell, PharmD BCOP
Michael J. Williams, PharmD
Board Update: The Common Denominator
David DeRemer, PharmD BCOP FCCP FHOPA
HOPA President (2020–2021)
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Florida College of Pharmacy
Assistant Director, Experimental Therapeutics, University of Florida Health Cancer Center
As an unprecedented spring comes to an end, I know I speak for many as we face uncertainty about our immediate future, the strain of daily social distancing, and mental fatigue. The shift from normalcy to the present circumstances has led me to an even deeper appreciation of the dedication of elementary school teachers. My wife and I are now in charge of our children’s education because of school closures, so Google classroom, class Zoom meetings, and the occasional Khan Academy video have been incorporated into our daily routine. Despite these technological advances, many will agree with me that keeping a child focused on an educational task remains a challenge!
I am happy to report that, after sustained focus and practice, my daughter has mastered the mathematical concept of the least common denominator. The term common denominator can also be used to describe a feature shared by members of a group. HOPA continues to expand, with more than 3,600 members and a contingent of 300 volunteers serving on committees and task forces. Our organization has an important common denominator: to support pharmacy practitioners and promote and advance hematology/oncology pharmacy to optimize the care of individuals affected by cancer. And despite the challenges we now face, the board is focused on advancing our integrated strategic plan for 2020–2023. This effort is highly dependent on the tireless efforts of our volunteers. The board is cognizant of the constraining bandwidth of our members, and we are seeking to optimize the volunteer experience.
HOPA’s board and other leaders began to revitalize our strategic plan in 2019, following the completion of our 5-year plan at year 3. This remarkable achievement is a testament to the activity and energy of our membership and external partners. Our new 3-year strategic plan is aspirational, but flexible, particularly in view of the challenges that COVID-19 has imposed on our committee activities. Our vision (the common denominator mentioned above) has not changed: that all individuals affected by cancer have a hematology/oncology pharmacist as an integral member of their care team. I have provided progress notes on each strategic pillar below.
Goal 1: Professional Development
HOPA is expanding its educational activities in order to meet the evolving needs of pharmacists. This summer we will launch two large initiatives in this area. You asked for it, and now you have it: HOPA’s Board Certified Oncology Pharmacist (BCOP) Preparatory and Recertification Course! Our course will offer 25 content outlines, 14 webinars, 32 podcasts, 28 BCOP continuing education (CE) hours, and 33.5 Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education CE hours. In addition, we are excited about “the Big Idea,” formally known as the Core Competency Certification Program, which consists of 12 modules designed to enhance the fundamental knowledge of practitioners.
Goal 2: Tools and Resources
HOPA is using new and diverse methods for delivering tools and resources to our members. By now, I hope you have become acquainted with our HOPA Now podcast series and all the learning opportunities it offers. We will continue to invite industry experts to discuss topics that have an impact on your practice and daily life. Integrating podcast learning into our BCOP education will help us meet the needs of an emerging younger demographic in our organization. Also, the Journal of Hematology Oncology Pharmacy has been named the official publication of HOPA. This journal will be an excellent place for HOPA members to publish their original research and exchange practice innovations relevant to the field of hematology/oncology pharmacy.
Goal 3: Research
The efforts of our Practice Outcomes and Professional Benchmarking Committee were recently published in a Journal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice article titled “Trends in the Delivery of Care to Oncology Patients in the United States: Emphasis on the Role of Pharmacists on the Healthcare Team.” This committee, along with our Basic and Translational Sciences Committee, continues to identify opportunities to support pharmacist researchers with funding for both early-stage and seasoned investigators.
Goal 4: Advocacy
Expanding HOPA’s footprint in the areas of safety, quality, and access to care is part of our advocacy initiative. In September 2019, HOPA’s Quality Oversight Committee organized a 1-day workshop as an introduction to the American Society of Clinical Oncology Quality Training Program. This workshop, attended by 26 HOPA members, was highly successful, and similar opportunities are planned for the near future. Another goal in this area is to expand successful partnerships with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, and the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer.
I am honored to serve as the 17th president in our young organization’s history. I feel immensely blessed to lead this team. Despite the immediate challenges we face, HOPA’s board, committees, and task forces will elevate HOPA to continued successes in the coming year. Given the number and range of activities that will be offered in 2020–2021, I hope that this summer presents you and your family the opportunity to relax and perhaps even travel! Take care.