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New PharmD degree is the right Rx for health care in Alberta

06 January 2011

A longstanding prescription for the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science has been filled.

The U of A’s board of governors approved the creation of a doctor of pharmacy program (PharmD), a program that has been on the books within the faculty since 1993. The new degree, which will be initially offered in September 2012 (pending provincial government approval), will be a 14-month program combining classroom and practice-based learning in either team-based, community/ambulatory or acute-care environments.

“The degree will allow the students to have a very broad view of pharmacy practice and all the possibilities,” said Terri Schindel, associate dean of undergraduate programs for the faculty.”We’re also hoping that pharmacists will want a rural experience where teams come together in the community in different ways.”

The PharmD is a logical extension of the pharmacy’s bachelor program, the degree that will remain the conditional standard for entry to professional practice in the province. However, the new program’s focus will shift the professional focus from the drugs to the more patient-based direction that their profession is moving in.

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