Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Knowing Drug Use

Posted by Omo at Tuesday, February 15, 2011

I was at the Ann Arbor VA for my drug info rotation. My daily routine revolved around answering questions pertaining to drug use at the VA. I learned about the various primary, secondary and tertiary sources available.
On a daily basis, I took questions from healthcare professionals mostly about off-label medication use. Most times, several drug regimens was tried for a patient but did not work and then a drug with an off-label use was considered. I would then have to find evidence to back up the drug use for that disease state. I came to find out that most times, evidence was based on case reports and rarely on phase II or III clinical trials.
I also had to prepare a drug monograph which is something I had never done before. A drug monograph is a document that specifies the kinds and amounts of ingredients a new drug or class of drugs may contain, the directions for the drug's use, the conditions in which it may be used, and the contraindications to its use. It also includes evidence of drug use and benefits illustrated in phase I, II and III clinical trials. I also prepared a drug bulletin on bioequivalence and generic drugs. It helped with sharpening my pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic background.
Finally, at this rotation, I gave a forty minutes in-service presentation on Clostridium difficile. I presented to students and pharmacy staff at the VA. I learned a lot about C difficile as well as novel therapeutic agents for this disease state. Doing an in-service presentation was advantageous because it prepared me for my seminar presentation which I gave about a week later at the college. Presenting to a team of students and staff at the VA prepared me very well for my seminar.
Overall, it was a great experience and a rotation in which I learned so much from.

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