ASHP Begins Implementation of New Membership Structure
The first phase of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) new membership structure that will allow its members more involvement in Society activities is well underway.
Three new sections have been created to address the information and resource needs of health-system practitioners. Sections are now available for pharmacists practicing as:
- Home, ambulatory, and chronic care practitioners,
- Clinical specialists and scientists, and
- Pharmacy practice managers.
The Societys previous component groups, the sections of clinical specialists and home care practitioners have been modified and the ASHP Center of Pharmacy Practice Management has been discontinued in lieu of a new section devoted to practice managers. The operations of the ASHP Pharmacy Student Forum have also been streamlined to be consistent with those of the sections.
There is no additional fee to participate in the new sections. Members may join as many sections as they choose, but will need to select one area as their primary group for involvement. All ASHP members will have full access to the information and activities of all sections.
Each of the sections will have an elected executive committee and staff director that will oversee activities and make recommendations for targeted educational programming and member resources. The groups will also have authority to make professional policy recommendations to the ASHP Board of Directors.
"The move to this new structure is an important step for the Society," said ASHP President Steven L. Sheaffer, Pharm.D., FASHP. "We believe that these sections will provide our members with new opportunities to achieve their professional objectives."
Additional component groups will be phased in over time, including an additional section serving the needs of inpatient care practitioners and membership forums for pharmacy technicians and new practitioners (within three years of their graduation date and including all residents).
ASHP will also provide mechanisms to foster communication among all members who are interested in specific practice issues (e.g,. computerized prescriber order entry; restricted drug distribution systems; medication safety). These "self-forming" groups will utilize listservs and other forms of electronic communications to exchange information.
ASHP is the 31,000-member national professional association that represents pharmacists who practice in hospitals, health maintenance organizations, long-term care facilities, home care, and other components of health care systems. ASHP, which has a long history of medication error prevention efforts, believes that the mission of pharmacists is to help people make the best use of medicines. Assisting pharmacists in fulfilling this mission is ASHP's primary objective. The Society has extensive publishing and educational programs designed to help members improve their delivery of pharmaceutical care, and it is the national accrediting organization for pharmacy residency and pharmacy technician training programs.