Tag Archive | academia

Knowledge, Skills, and Resources for Pharmacy Informatics Education

The most recent issue of the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education featured a Technology in Pharmacy Education section.  There is some really interesting reading in this section including, “Use of Twitter to Encourage Interaction in a Multi-campus Pharmacy Management Course” by @Brent_Fox.  Brent actually authored several articles including, “Knowledge, Skills, and Resources for Pharmacy Informatics Education“, which he wrote along with the newly installed Chair of the ASHP Informatics Section Allen Flynn, informatics luminary and frontliner Chris Fortier (@FortiPharm), and I.  With this article, we tried to summarize the baseline informatics knowledge that pharmacy students should possess upon graduation, framed within med use processes.  My hope is that it will be of real practical use to educators and others as specific recommendations are provided regarding activities and resources for class and curricular integration, rather than just observations made from 30,000 feet.  Also, as with all articles in AJPE, this one is open access (OA) in that it can be accessed free, full-text by anyone.

@kevinclauson

Source: Fox BI, Flynn AJ, Fortier CR, Clauson KA. Knowledge, skills, and resources for pharmacy informatics education. Am J Pharm Educ. 2011;75(5):Article 93.

Fun with Fonts feat. Profs Perry & West

One of the best things about working in academia is interacting with a constantly changing set of students.  We have a particularly diverse group at my University in terms of background, country of origin, language, and maturity.  And while it may be cliche, it is true that in teaching them you can learn just as much from them (if you are open to it).  I have dabbled with aspects of instructional design, cognitive load theory, multimedia learning, etc., and other RxInformatics folks like @poikonen have posted about Beautiful Evidence, but I recently had a rotation student focus my attention on a seemingly simple element: font.  Mr. Salvatico opened my eyes a bit in terms of free resources for fonts and their utility.  While we didn’t see eye-to-eye on the frequency of font variation in lectures, I definitely learned from our exchanges.  In the spirt of these exchanges, I present the following Fun with Fonts ‘case study’.  Please be aware these lyrics do carry a parental advisory warning.

@kevinclauson

P.S. A good way to see if your students are actually listening in class is to introduce this clip by Katy Perry and KENNY West and see how fast it takes one of them to correct you to KANYE West.

Intersection of social media and research

There are a number of initiatives, sites, and platforms trying to capitalize on the power of social media and social networking to enhance research efforts. A few of them are ResearchGate, Health InnoVation Exchange (HIVE), and VIVO.  Each offers something a bit different; for a full list of ‘biomedical communities’ check out this excellent resource by @Berci Mesko.

Aside from those ‘communities’, can social media enhance research?  For me, the answer is a resounding yes.  I have both observed and directly benefitted via plenty of resources.  Here is a random sample: a source of support for grad students that hosts data sets, actual datasets made freely available for conducting research, a how-to for using Facebook to recruit survey participants,  and a prelim study on use of Facebook for health education.

However, for me, the clearest benefit has been from social networking tools; chief among those is Twitter.  It has helped my research by: 1) connecting me to people with complementary expertise for collaborating on research projects, 2) exposing me to different types of expertise and ways to approach problem solving for research, and 3) creating a filtered source of relevant information about research.

It’s that last item that I want to focus on.  A little over six months ago, I saw a tweet from @mindofandre (who has the excellent Pulse+Signal) announcing a RFP for the Mobilizing for Health grant by the McKesson Foundation.  For some reason, I did not see that RFP on my Community of Science alerts, or any of the other resources I use to stay informed on grant opportunities.  Thankfully, I did see it on Twitter.  It looked like a great match for a study our mHealth group wanted to conduct. Fast-forward 6 months and past lots of heavy lifting by my colleagues, and we are very happy we’ll be able to conduct that study as ours was one of the proposals funded!  Now that I think of it, Andre was the person who put us into touch with several other mHealth researchers about 10 months prior to that as well – quite the Gladwellian Connector, that one.  In any event, this is just one example of the intersection of social media and research.  The tools are there, you just have to use them.

Oh, and in the best pay-it-forward tradition, here are two outstanding mHealth research-related opportunities:

  1. NIH/OBSSR mHealth Summer Institute where early career investigators will get an intensive weeklong experience to learn about mHealth research. (Deadline extended until March 10)
  2. The new cycle for the McKesson Foundation Mobilizing for Health grant has begun and Letters of Intent are due on April 1, 2011.

I’d love to hear any examples of how social media has impacted your research – by creating opportunities, informing you, using it as a tool to collect data, connecting you with potential collaborators, etc.

@kevinclauson

The secret of great scientists? They don’t watch TV.

I have been re-examining how to best manage my time. My goals have been to find a better way to squeeze out every last ounce of productivity from the time alotted for work (during ‘regular work hours’, nights, and weekends) as well as how to harvest even more time from my day for work (without completely destroying any hope of balance).

During my proscribed organic problem solving time, I came across a suggestion to check out The Secret Life of Scientists, which seems like something @2020science may have recommended. What a great show and idea to get people to look at science differently! The basic premise is that they show a garden variety scientist, but then they reveal their ‘secret’ life or interest as well. A couple of faves include Microbiologist/Professional Wrestler, Game Developer/Clarinetist, and Biochemist/Pageant Queen. If nothing else, you should at least check out some of the clips and ’10 Questions’ such as for Mark Siddall. Unsurprisingly, they asked this leech expert: Twilight or True Blood? His answer? “Are these movies? I don’t have TV.”

Ok, that’s not *that* unusual. I went to pharmacy school with a guy who didn’t own a television. He and his wife, a physician, thought there were better ways to spend their time. Sure, he was easily one of the top three minds of the entire class, but he totally missed out on some pop culture references during conversations! I also saw this same TV deficiency in a couple other Scientists videos like Climatologist/Juggler Gavin Schmidt who was asked: Al Roker or Willard Scott? His Answer? Who?

Perhaps I need to rethink my TV approach, in which I don’t even count watching Arsenal or Titans games because…well, that’s watching sports, not television shows. I’ll watch some TV shows telling myself it’s a way to unwind or disengage and relax. I do think there is some legitimate truth to that. However, we are still (for now) in the era where TV has replaced religion as the opiate of the masses…so perhaps I should book a brief stay in television rehab. In the meantime, I am going to go finish another manuscript and wonder if I could finish twice that many in the same time were I sans television.

@kevinclauson

ULP Digital Pharma Nine Notables

Two-thumb typing on telephone at twenty to thirty thousand feet while things are still fresh in my mind from Digital Pharma East.

Digital Pharma was the first Pharma-centric conference I’ve attended.  My usual professional meeting haunts are either focused on HCPs or are a blend of healthcare industry and technology.  I wasn’t completely certain what to expect other than I would likely be among the minority as a ‘representative’ from academia and pharmacy.  That’s plenty of preface, onto the Notables

Notable Keynote
As much as I enjoyed keynotes by Ian Talmadge, Dr. Bertalan Mesko (@Berci), etc., the one that completely floored me was delivered by Dr. Ian Morrison (@seccurve).  It was the perfect blend of style (his seamless comparison of Pimp My Ride to the state of US healthcare) and substance (holistic view of drivers of medication non-adherence).  Spot on observations, great timing, and natural, unforced humor.  The clip on his site does not do him justice. 

Notable Conversation
@LenStarnes is just a really interesting cat. I found him to have a fascinating global perspective, wealth of experience, and he is a darn good storyteller in his own right as well as being a fellow ZX81 owner.

Notable Attendee
Phil Cranch (@cranchtweet), MSPharm, MComm at The Crystal Agency.  He was the only other self-identified pharmacist there who I saw and tied for my fave Aussie.

Notable Anniversary
Congrats to the folks at Pixels and Pills who are a very precocious, collective one.  Remarkable energy, nice approach, no doubt headed for great things.

Notable Recruit
You just watch, I am totally going to figure out a way to poach @Shwen Gwee and get him back to academia where he belongs. Academia needs more driven people who are also savvy.  Don’t worry; I’ll still let him help the ExL Pharma folks.

Notable Transparency
None. I detected no transparency of note. I get that it’s canine-devour-canine and all that, but still a bit disappointing.

Notable Mobile Experience
I can’t help but think if I had talked to @CynthiaNorth 6 months ago that it would have cut off about a month of prep time for our mHealth research protocols and that we, in turn, would have added perspective and experience that would have enhanced their patient adherence piece.

Notable Connection(s)
My post. My rules. Multiple parts to this Notable. @PhilBaumann of Health is Social may just end up being the first social media healthcare futurist. I feel like Dr. Mike Sevilla (@doctoranonymous), despite his notoriety, is underrated as a presence especially given his remarkable longevity. Dr. Bryan Vartabedian (@Doctor_V) simply gets the need for rigorous research in this area and authors a thoughtful, relevant blog.  After speaking to Gilles Fry (@gfry) a few times, I finally figured out a one-word descriptor for where he resides on the ‘Rage Against the Machine’ to ‘Endearing Curmudgeon’ continuum: Fierce.

Notable Omissions
See above re: rules and limits. Somehow digilicious by @JaeSelle did not fit into the Nine despite a potent combination of sculptor, visual enthusiast, and embracing the inner geek.  And where was @jonmrich curator of the Social Media Wiki?  Great googly moogly that thing is useful.  I planned to thank him for those efforts and to tell him to cheer up.  Health literacy, while not omitted from the conversation, was limited to cameos.  Civility seemed to be omitted at a handful of sessions.  Barely activated patients and hesitant healthcare professionals would have made fine additions to some panels to give a fuller picture.  I did not omit any of the stargazing targets.  However, I’ve obviously omitted at least one great connection, one great conversation, and one great find.

@kevinclauson

Stargazing at Digital Pharma East

I am really looking forward to the 4th Annual Digital Pharma East coming up on October 18th in Philadelphia.  In addition to presenting, I plan to do some major stargazing while I am there.  I don’t mean ‘star’ in the manner of the cult of celebrity.  I am defining stars as people who have something really valuable and/or interesting to say.  It feels a little mercenary to go with the express intent of cherry picking knowledge from experts given the themes around sharing – but I guess that’s just part of the allure.

I’m also very much looking forward to reconnecting with Berci Mesko (@Berci) who I have not seen in a couple years, talking shop with social media flag bearer Bryan Vartabedian (@Doctor_V) who will likely be pressed for time from Co-chairing the event, having a face-to-face chat with Phil Baumann (@PhilBaumann) whose mind works unlike any other I’ve encountered in this space, meeting Gilles Frydman (@gfry) who is the final piece of the ePatient trinity, as well as Shwen Gwee (@shwen) who has both tweet cred and does great work.

In addition to those folks, I may be most eager to see presentations by representatives from Comscore and Within3, along with Cluetrain Manifesto author Doc Searls and futurist Ian Morrison.  Needless to say, I am planning to see every single presentation on the final day, which is dedicated to mobile/mHealth.  The rest of the time, it’s just a question of which Stream.  Finally, I am curious to see how the unconference activities and #SocPharm sessions play out relative to previous HealthCamp events I’ve seen.

As for me, I’ll be presenting “Social Media Research: Partnering with Academia”.  The link to the slides on the Digital Pharma conference site will be provided here after the presentation and will be available beyond that at SlideShare as per.  I’m curious to see the reception given that the composition of the audience is pretty different than who I have been interacting with recently.  I definitely have a (relatively) longstanding interest in the subject as one of the first articles we published on the topic was “Legal and regulatory risk associated with Web 2.0 adoption by pharmaceutical companies” in the Journal of Medical Marketing.  We’ve also published several other studies on interactions between different healthcare professionals and representatives from Pharma.  Ultimately, I am banking on the fact that I actually do what I will be talking about and have some concrete takeaways for those interested in the topic.  I’m also optimistic that using an audience response system and building in time for discussion will help make it legitimately interactive.  We shall see.

Overall, I am looking forward to reconnecting and making new connections, planting the seeds for future research collaborations, and learning from area experts that are rarely available in this concentration.  I hope to see you there, hear your thoughts, or cross paths via #DigPharm (or whatever the hashtag ends up being)!

@kevinclauson

Driving Change with mHealth

Click image to view slides

This should be a really interesting semester since it is first time I will be teaching “Consumer Health Informatics and Web 2.0 in Healthcare” in the College of Medicine – Biomedical Informatics Program and in the College of Pharmacy (COP).  This is the third time I have taught this elective in the Masters of Biomedical Informatics (MSBI) Program, but it is the first for Pharmacy (and obviously the first time concurrently).

The COP elective is more traditional as it primarily meets in a classroom; however, it does have some hybrid aspects in that some of the lectures will be asynchronous Tegrity sessions.  The plan is for the students to view those on their own and then have discussion-driven classes following those.  I am also using an audience response system during the COP course to try and promote student engagement.  It is a course delivered via live, interactive video to two of our sites this semester (i.e. Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach).  One of the most exciting aspects of the COP course is the calibre of the guest lectures who have agreed to participate this semester.  It is a bit experimental as the guest presenters will be contributing lectures via asynchronous recorded lectures, live via videoconference (e.g. Skype) so that we can also have live Q&A, and live in-classroom. 

For the MSBI offering, it is built to accomodate students in a much wider geographic distribution.  Most of the students this semester are in Florida, but there are also students spending much of their time in places as far as Saudi Arabia.  Regardless, South Florida lends itself to a very diverse population and so there is a strong international presence in most programs anyway.  Because of this distribution, the course is basically delivered online through the use of asynchronous sessions and Live Sessions.  This is a really interesting course due, in part, to the heterogenous nature of the students.  Even though the program is housed in the COM, it allows for varying types of students seeking their Masters.  So far I have had students with backgrounds including practicing pharmacists, physicians, nurses, and scientists along with teachers, businesspeople and computer science experts.  It makes for some pretty lively discussions as the range of experience and expertise among the students can be eye-opening!

So that is a pretty long preface to say that I have posted the slides from one of my favorite lectures of the semester – mHealth.  I think there is enormous potential for mHealth.  I am also happy to be involved in a panel on this topic at the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Midyear Clinical Meeting in December of this year.  Please feel free to share any feedback you have about the scope, contents, or emphasis of this slide deck.  Every semester in this course I add and delete lecture topics and then tweak and update the existing ones – so your opinions are all welcome.

@kevinclauson

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