Earlier this year, Washington State University’s Danial Baker, Pharm.D., was appointed to the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention’s (USP) Healthcare Quality Expert Committee. Now Baker has received two additional appointments through this organization that sets standards for drug regulations enforced by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Baker has been appointed to the subcommittee Medicare Model Guidelines, and to the expert panel Model Guidelines for All Marketed Products. Baker has more than 25 years of experience as a member of various types of formulary committees, including a Medicaid program, a pharmacy benefit management company, and other healthcare plans.

His original appointment to the Healthcare Quality Expert Committee is for five years (2015-2020). Baker’s service on the Medicare Model Guidelines subcommittee is for the current revision cycle for 2015-17 and his term on the expert panel will also be for five years.

The subcommittee was established in 2003 in response to the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act, which names the USP as the organization to develop and maintain the list of drugs and their therapeutic uses that health plans may cover under Medicare Part D.

“Updating of the Model Guidelines for the USP that is used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will influence the drug benefit that will be provided to millions of people in the United States covered by Medicare,” said Baker.

According to Baker, the expert panel is a new group charged with the development of a Draft USP General Chapter to accompany the current classification system, which includes standards for formulary classifications systems and recommendations of additional categories previously not indexed in the USP Medicare Model Guidelines.

“While the Model Guidelines for All Marketed Products is a new initiative, I will be helping to develop it from the ground up and it has the potential to impact the drug benefit programs offered to all Americans,” he said.

Most of the work of this committee will be done by conference calls and email correspondence, with occasional meetings at the USP headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Baker’s service to the USP is an example of how the College of Pharmacy is contributing to Washington State University’s land-grant mission to provide service to society and to apply knowledge through engagement that will improve quality of life and enhance the economy of the nation.

“The work of this subcommittee and the expert panel can only be accomplished through the application of clinical and scientific knowledge to form policies used to assess drug benefit programs,” said Baker. “Faculty engagement in these types of activities also helps to illustrate to our students that any member of their profession can be involved in these types of leadership roles and how an individual can influence policies that effect patient care, the health care industry, and the health of the nation.”

[January 6, 2016] By: Lori J. Maricle