Choi Chung, RPh, BSc Pharm
One of the values that we believe in is helping patients make informed decisions through health promotion and education. One of our aims with this interview series is to bring awareness to the different healthcare professionals and health advocates around the world and how they’re actively involved in bettering the lives of others!
We were able to have the opportunity to interview Jarred Prudencio, a pharmacist with a background in ambulatory care pharmacy. Check out the interview below as he talks more about his profession and how he’s actively involved in health advocacy!
#1 First off, thank you for agreeing to be interviewed, Jarred. Tell us a bit about yourself!
Thanks for reaching out! I grew up in Hilo, Hawaii, and got my first job in an independent pharmacy as a cashier/clerk when I was a teenager. This sparked my interest in pharmacy, so I went on to get my Doctor of Pharmacy Degree from the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy (DKICP) at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. I then completed a specialized post-graduate residency in ambulatory care at the UC Davis Medical Center in California. After completing my residency, I obtained a position as assistant professor at the DKICP, where I’m currently employed at my practice site in a family medicine clinic. I’m dual board-certified in advanced diabetes management and as an ambulatory care pharmacy specialist. In my spare time, I enjoy being outdoors, sports and spending time with my family and friends.
#2 Can you tell us about your profession?
My service in the family medicine clinic focuses on “comprehensive medication management” (CMM) which means that I have autonomous appointments with patients where I review their medication regimen in its entirety and optimize each medication to improve their disease state control. I work under a Collaborative Practice Agreement with the family medicine physicians in my clinic, which grants me the authority to prescribe new medications, alter prescriptions, and order labs relating to the patients I am treating. Since I practice in family medicine, the conditions that I manage vary widely. My expertise primarily lies in diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases, and viral disorders such as HIV and HCV.
#3 Can you share with us what a typical day looks like for you as an ambulatory care pharmacist?
My average day starts off with patient appointments for CMM, which range from 20-40 minutes each. During each appointment, I start with a medication reconciliation to make sure that I have the best medication history for the patient. Then I conduct motivational interviewing with the patient, to help them better understand their health conditions and what their medications are for. I then use all the information I have gathered to make changes to the patient’s medication regimen, to optimize it and make sure it’s safe, effective, and patient-specific. A large amount of my time is spent talking to the patient to educate them about their medications and conditions, to empower them to be involved in this patient-centered care that we provide.
After appointments are through, I complete follow-up duties such as documentation, assessing lab results, and assisting with medication access issues. I manage all the patients on anticoagulation therapy, so most of that is done by telephone for INR follow-up for patients taking warfarin. Throughout the day, I’ll also get numerous questions, and drug information consults from physicians and nurse practitioners about medications for the patients they see that day. On most days, I also have 2-3 fourth-year pharmacy students who I precept in the clinic since I’m in an academic position.
#4 What was it that drew you into the field of ambulatory care and family medicine?
My interest in ambulatory care grew while I was a pharmacy student and gained some experience in a clinic. My favourite thing about the ambulatory care field is my ability to spend time in direct patient care, building rapport and long-term relationships with my patients. It’s the most rewarding thing to see a patient’s health improve over time. I also enjoy being able to practice in a clinical role at the top of my license through the collaborative practice agreement.
I chose family medicine as my specific field of practice within ambulatory care because of the breadth of conditions that I encounter. I enjoy being able to care for the entire patient instead of just focusing on one specialized condition. It’s also rewarding for me to be able to care for the entire range from pediatrics to geriatrics.
#5 What is one of the top pieces of health advice you’d like to share with the public?
This may seem very broad and simple, but my top piece of advice for the public is to ASK questions to your healthcare providers. The health field is moving to patient-centred care, so it’s important that you recognize that you, as a patient, are a key piece of your own healthcare team. All your health care providers are there to help you, and the better you understand your medications and conditions, the better suited you’ll be to improve your health. It’s an old but true saying, “there’s no such thing as a stupid question.”
#6 Where can our audience reach you if they have any further questions for you?
I manage an Instagram account called @AmbCareRx which posts medication-related pearls that can be helpful for clinicians and patients alike. If anyone has questions, I can also be reached by email at email@example.com. Thank you!