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Public health in focus at NACDS Foundation Dinner

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  • Umair Shah of Harris County (Texas) Public Health (center), is honored by the NACDS Foundation’s Kathleen Jaeger and NACDS’ Steve Anderson.

At its 19th Annual Foundation Dinner in Manhattan, the NACDS Foundation raised $1.8 million to support evidence-based research, pharmacy education and philanthropic efforts aimed at improving patient health outcomes and advancing population health.

More than 100 companies and people sponsored the 2017 NACDS Foundation Dinner. Attendees included executives from national and regional drug chains, consumer packaged goods companies and pharmaceutical manufacturers.

“The NACDS Foundation is engaging on issues that have been identified by public health authorities as some of the most pressing issues before us,” NACDS chairman Alex Gourlay, co-chief operating officer of Walgreens Boots Alliance, said at the event. He cited the foundation’s collaborative work on HIV and hepatitis C screening and solutions to the opioid abuse epidemic. “All of us are impacted and motivated to find solutions, from the basic perspective of helping to protect our families and our neighborhoods.”

Also at the annual dinner, Umair Shah, executive director and local health authority for Harris County (Texas) Public Health, was presented with the 2017 NACDS Foundation Excellence in Patient Care Award for his work in the Hurricane Harvey response and recovery efforts in Houston this year. Dr. Shah is also the president of the National Association of County and City Health Officials.

“From his start as a hospital emergency room physician to the position he holds today, Dr. Shah’s work is an inspiration,” commented NACDS Foundation president Kathleen Jaeger. “He is one of our nation’s quiet heroes of public health.”

Jaeger also noted the vital contributions that public health officials make to their communities. “Not only are they crucial to our efforts to innovate new models, they are also tireless advocates of health care equity, giving all members of society a fair opportunity for improved health.”


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