Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Fair Deal

Posted by Akin at Sunday, January 10, 2010

It’s 20 degrees outside this morning. I bundle up in my winter coat, put my gloves on, and head out to my car as I realize, too late, that I should have started my car earlier so that it would have been pre-heated for the drive to work. I scrape the frost off my auto windshield and head to the first day of my first 2010 clinical rotation.

Contrary to what you may suspect based on this description, I’m actually not in Michigan. I’m actually 600 miles south of Ann Arbor in Chapel Hill, N.C., and, boy, is it a lot colder than I anticipated. This certainly isn’t what I thought I was signing up for when I decided I could escape typical Michigan January weather and instead spend a month at United Therapeutics pharmaceutical company in Chapel Hill. Usually, the weather at this time of year is in the 50s. I’ve been told that this is the coldest winter North Carolina has seen in years. I think global warming is to blame. But whenever someone finds out I’m from Michigan, I am playfully accused of bringing this weather with me.

Considering how abnormally cold it also was in Las Vegas during the December 2009 American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Midyear Clinical Meeting and Exhibition, maybe I am bringing cold weather along with me wherever I go.

At my United Therapeutics rotation, I’m getting to see how clinical trials are conducted, including the details of multi-centered subject recruitment, how protocols are changed to ensure patient safety, and the effort the company makes to comply with federal standards. I’m interested in pursuing a career in clinical research, so the experience I am getting is great on many levels. I may have come up short in my hope for warm weather, but the clinical research experience I'm gaining at United Therapeutics has more than compensated for that.

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