Many of the medicines we depend on to treat disease—and even to save our lives—pose potentially serious risks along with their benefits. Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that about 40,000 deaths yearly in the United States may be attributable to the side effects of drugs, a number that rivals the toll of traffic accidents.
“Find a need and fill it” was a popular slogan that graced the side of pink Kaiser Cement trucks around the San Francisco Bay Area in the 60s and 70s. But Donald Kishi, PharmD ’68, took the motto as his professional mantra.
The UCSF School of Pharmacy conferred the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree on 120 graduates at its 2017 commencement ceremony on May 19 at Louise Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco.
Dean B. Joseph Guglielmo, PharmD, addressed a gathering that included more than 1,000 of the graduates’ family, friends, and colleagues, as well as School faculty members and special guests. In his remarks, he celebrated the graduates’ diversity, breadth of experience, empathy, and perseverance.
For the 37th consecutive year, the UCSF School of Pharmacy has received more funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) than any other pharmacy school in the United States. School researchers were awarded $28.2 million in grants during NIH’s 2016 fiscal year, from October 1, 2015 to September 30, 2016.
Among the top-funded researchers was Kathy Giacomini, PhD, a faculty member in the School’s department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences.
With a pharmacist dad and a degree in biochemistry, Meghan Frear was certain that pharmacy school was a perfect fit for her. However, she says, “When I first entered UCSF, I could not have articulated for you that I wanted to be a systems-level pharmacist.” “In undergrad I took an economics of health care course, which sounds so nerdy,” Frear recalls.
Tina Ling was born in a refugee camp in Thailand after her parents fled the genocide in Cambodia. Growing up in Southern California in an immigrant-rich community, she saw her parents and many of their neighbors struggle with their new country’s language, culture, and economics—including access to health care and health literacy.
After earning her PharmD, Pong Dahl completed a year-long residency at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, focusing her elective rotations in ambulatory care. She is now the supervisor for ambulatory care pharmacy services for the John Muir Physician Network (part of John Muir Health), which includes more than 1,000 primary and specialty care physicians in the East Bay.
Nation debates possibility of dramatically new directions for health care coverage, science funding, immigration, education; Revealing malaria/HIV drug interactions in children; Decreasing cancer drug toxicity while increasing dose; Engineering safer opioids; Evidence for comprehensive medication management; Medicare Part D as a learning model for pharmacy education—impact 10 years out; New genetic insights into diabetes drug response; Annotating the ‘dark genome’; Epigenetics of ethnicity; New
Gina Ko, in a crisp white lab coat, sits in a San Francisco clinic office across the desk from Rose, a low-income senior on Medicare, talking with Rose about how she can get the medications she needs at a price tag she can afford.
Recipients of the UCSF School of Pharmacy 2017 Mary Anne Koda-Kimble Seed Award for Innovation will explore ideas ranging from possible new ways to treat obesity to new ways of accessing antibiotic-producing microbes found in soil. Five projects are being funded in this, the third round of awards since the fund was established in 2012.