Pharmacy Students Visit Albany for Advocacy Day

April 16, 2024

On Monday, April 15, students from the Wegmans School of Pharmacy traveled to Albany to meet with legislators for the state-wide Pharmacy Advocacy Day.

Students and faculty at the annual Pharmacy Advocacy Day in Albany, New York.

Organized by the Pharmacy Society of the State of New York, Pharmacy Advocacy Day provides students a guided opportunity to meet with their Senate and Assembly representatives to discuss legislation that will affect their lives as practicing pharmacists, and perhaps more importantly, improve patient care.

“Pharmacy Advocacy Day is a high-value day for pharmacy professionals to meet with their respective New York State Senate and Assembly representatives to discuss bills working their way through the legislative process,” said Dr. Karl Williams, professor of pharmacy ethics and law, who organized Fisher’s involvement in Advocacy Day. “This is not an academic exercise as much as a professional ethical mandate to advocate for our patients. For many of us, this is the first brush with political advocacy and the citizenship it implies. We are grateful for the support of the School and the University in this endeavor.”

The team from the Wegmans School of Pharmacy met with Senator Samra Brouk, Assembly member Jen Lunsford, Assembly member Steven Hawley, Senator John Mannione, and Senator Thomas O’Mara. Discussion topics focused on expanding privileges for pharmacists, including administering CLIA-waived tests (nasal swabs and finger sticks) in the pharmacy, as well as the right to initiate treatment under an open order from the Commissioner of Health for ailments such as COVID-19, influenza, and strep throat.

All of New York’s eight pharmacy schools were represented, and professional pharmacists from around the state, including Wegmans School of Pharmacy alumni Dr. Harsh Kothari ’12 , Dr. John McDonald ’13, Dr. Jessica Lynch ’13 , and Dr. Carly Messenger ’23  also participated in the day.