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NACDS RxImpact Day gets under way on Capitol Hill
March 9th, 2011
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has mobilized more than 350 pharmacy industry representatives from about 40 states for the third annual NACDS RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill.
Kicked off Wednesday, the two-day grassroots advocacy event in Washington, D.C. — in which many participants don white pharmacist coats — aims to drive home the message that pharmacy is a vital solution for reducing health care costs and improving people's lives, according to NACDS.
Community pharmacy participants in the lobbying drive include pharmacy and retail executives, division and store managers, pharmacists, and pharmacy school deans and students. Besides fostering interaction with lawmakers and policy decision makers, the effort is designed to raise awareness among pharmacy advocates that their voice is needed year-round to highlight the value of pharmacy to public officials.
"NACDS RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill demonstrates the excitement, enthusiasm and active engagement of pharmacy — the face of neighborhood health care," said NACDS president and chief executive officer Steve Anderson said in a statement. "In the third year of this well-attended event, NACDS RxImpact Day continues to build momentum for pro-patient and pro-pharmacy public policy and is a strong testament to pharmacy's future health and well-being.”
Along with the lobbying push, the RxImpact initiative includes a variety of programs to educate, energize and engage pharmacy professionals and pharmacy students on behalf of pro-patient and pro-pharmacy public policy priorities, NACDS noted.
Those efforts include RxImpact training programs to educate pharmacy professionals about how to advocate on pharmacy issues with lawmakers; pharmacy tours for members of Congress that bring lawmakers inside the operations of a pharmacy; "Action Alerts" that enable pharmacy advocates to write letters to federal and state lawmakers on policies that impact pharmacy; and the RxImpact Votes program that informs participants about upcoming elections and campaigns.
In addition, to help mentor pharmacy school students, the RxImpact "U" Academy and RxImpact "U" Network provide key resources for students to get involved and stay involved as they continue pharmacy school and become pharmacists serving patients, according to NACDS. The association also has created a "Virtual NACDS RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill" web site for pharmacy advocates unable to participate in person in Washington, D.C.
"NACDS RxImpact is more than just one day in the nation's capital," Anderson added. "It is a vital, long-term commitment to grassroots advocacy and activism on behalf of patient-centric pharmacy care and service. Participation in the many NACDS RxImpact programs is critical to the continued success of pharmacy's public policy priorities."