SPOKANE, Wash. – Sarah Beaty-VanDeMark, a director of system pharmacy program development, spoke with student pharmacists on October 29 about the career opportunities for pharmacists and the role of the pharmacist on the health care team. Her presentation was part of the Washington State University College of Pharmacy’s Preparing for Your Career in Pharmacy seminar series.

“Pharmacists are getting involved in patient care and working at the top of their license,” said Beaty-VanDeMark.

This involvement has lead to more career opportunities for pharmacists. The big opportunities include ambulatory pharmacy, transition of care and medical adherence, said Beaty-VanDeMark.

At the beginning of her career, Beaty-VanDeMark’s experience in the emergency room proved the benefits of having a pharmacist involved in patient care.

“If a patient had a heart attack the doctor would be looking at diagnostics while I would ask questions about allergies and current medications,” said Beaty-VanDeMark.

She discussed her observations that medicine is heading in a direction that will involve pharmacists in expanded capacities.

Pharmacists are well positioned to meet the increasingly varied and evolving health needs of communities and populations because of their training. Pharmacists understand patient needs and can make patient care plans, said Beaty-VanDeMark.

“Pharmacists will also need to be present in ambulatory care in order to keep people healthy and out of the hospitals,” said Beaty-VanDeMark.

Sarah Beaty-VanDeMark is currently the director of system pharmacy program development at Providence Health Services. Before this position she worked at Highline Medical Center in Burien, Wash., and Swedish Medical Center in Seattle. In both of these positions she was highly involved in clinical pharmacy.

WSU organizes this seminar series to expose student pharmacists to a variety of career opportunities and introduce them to the organizational leaders within the various fields of pharmacy.

The WSU pharmacy seminars are funded through the Dean’s Fund for Excellence and the college’s community partner, the Spokane Teachers Credit Union. For information on participating in the career seminar series, or to contribute to the Dean’s Fund for Excellence to help expose WSU student pharmacists to thought-leaders and industry innovators, contact the College of Pharmacy advancement office at gocougs@pharmacy.wsu.edu or 509-358-7651.