While doctors and nurses play the crucial roles in their patients’ care, there are other professionals who may not be as obvious. These are the pharmacists who collaborate with physicians to ensure patient safety and healing.
At St. Rose Ambulatory & Surgery Center, the pharmacy is always available for patients having a one-day surgery or other procedure, as well as those seeking treatment at its 24-hour Urgent Care Center and infusion clinic.
The pharmacy recently moved from the basement to the second floor of the facility.
"This is a more central location for us," said Jared Smith, director of pharmacy. "We are right next door to the surgery suites, which gives us immediate access to patients, and their physicians and nurses."
Even though pharmacists in this setting don’t have the luxury of constant patient interaction, Smith or one of the other two pharmacists is always available. There are two pharmacists on staff and the other works on contract.
"We talk with patients any time they have questions about their medications," Smith said.
Since October is American Pharmacists Month, Smith is taking the opportunity to share information about the pharmacy staff’s daily routine. For example, beyond dispensing medications for the facility, they are involved in checking for possible drug interactions, patient education, consultations, and drug and lab monitoring.
"All of us want to ensure that drug therapy is provided in a safe and effective manner," Smith said. "As medication experts, pharmacists are ideal to help with this task. We monitor all patients’ medication therapies and provide quality checks to detect harmful drug interactions or reactions."
St. Rose’s pharmacy is licensed by the State Board of Pharmacy. Its hours are 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday. At other times, a pharmacist is just a phone call away.
"We are available to our Urgent Care Center, infusion clinic and all one-day surgeries," Smith noted. "Long-term goals include expanding service outside these traditional areas. We are eager to branch out more into the community and region.
"In addition, we are looking at ways we can team up with St. Catherine Hospital in Garden City to enhance services," he said.
St. Catherine is St. Rose’s sister facility under the Catholic Health Initiatives umbrella.
"CHI and all its facilities are faith-based," Smith said. "This means a lot to me because we help everyone who needs help. St. Rose’s unique mission is to care for patients and their families, as well as the community with professionalism and compassion. I am glad to be part of it."