Googling “careers that combine chemistry and calculus” led CharLeigh Steverson to her interest in compounding pharmacy. Now a second-year student in the Doctor of Pharmacy program at the UofSC College of Pharmacy, she is taking every opportunity to advocate for her future profession.
A native of Florence, South Carolina, Steverson was the only pharmacy student to join 132 pharmacy professionals in Washington D.C. on November 2 for ‘Compounders on Capitol Hill,’ an annual advocacy day organized by the Alliance for Pharmacy Compounding.
Because manufactured drugs do not always come in the right strengths and dosages for everyone, pharmacists’ ability to create customized medications through compounding means that millions of patients across the country can have their unique health care needs met.
We have the power to optimize our patients' quality of care in immeasurable ways, if we'd only just speak up.
Attendees at this year’s CCH event met with 122 members of Congress to discuss critical issues facing the profession and advocate for the continued rights of pharmacists to prepare customized courses of drug therapy, as authorized by federal law.
Steverson attended the event for the first time this year.
“CCH gave me invaluable opportunities to network with trailblazers in our profession, and I was able to make so many connections in just two short days,” says Steverson.
“I was also able to visit Capitol Hill where I met with staff from the offices of senators and representatives from South Carolina to discuss different policies affecting compounding pharmacies and their patients' access to compounded medications.”
She recognizes that the value of attending events and opportunities like this as a student is immense.
“I think it's important for everyone to get involved in advocacy because in this ever-changing world, pharmacy needs to be ready to progress with it,” she says. “We have the power to optimize our patients' quality of care in immeasurable ways, if we'd only just speak up.”
Assistant Professor Kathy Quarles Moore, director of the Compounding Laboratory in the College of Pharmacy, regularly attends the event and encourages students to take advantage of this opportunity.
“I am a member of APC and I always try to go to this – It is a phenomenal trip.”