25064 Pharmacy Student Internships with Oregon's Immunization Program

Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Columbia Hall
Carlos Quintanilla, MA , Public Health Advisor, Oregon Health Authority/Division of Public Health

Background:  The Oregon Immunization Program (OIP) began a partnership with the Pacific University School of Pharmacy in 2008 enabling its students to intern with OIP.  The internship provides students with a learning opportunity, giving them a unique perspective on public health.  The interns, within a year of earning their doctoral-level pharmacy degree, provide skilled assistance to OIP, in large part addressing pharmacist-immunization program linkages.

Setting:  OIP Office in the Portland State Office Building  OIP and Pacific University signed a memorandum of agreement, outlining the responsibilities of each partner and interns’ job description.   

Population:  OIP, Pacific University School of Pharmacy, Oregon public and private vaccine providers, pharmacists

Project Description:  Interns have worked in a number of program areas, including assessing cold chain failures, developing re-vaccination campaign protocols, developing strategies and tools for use in recruitment of pharmacists as Vaccines for Children (VFC) program providers and as contributors to ALERT, Oregon’s immunization information system.  Currently, Oregon pharmacists can vaccinate individuals as young as 15 for influenza, 18 for all other vaccines.  Legislation will allow pharmacists to vaccinate children as young as 11 as of January 1, 2011 for all vaccines. The first pharmacy intern started in July 2008.  To date there have been eight interns, with two more scheduled through spring 2011.  Interns are co-supervised by their university preceptor and OIP’s public health advisor.

Results/Lessons Learned:  The project’s effectiveness will be measured in part by the number of new pharmacists enrolled as VFC providers and ALERT IIS users after the new law goes into effect, as well as a satisfaction survey on an intern-developed tool for follow-up on cold chain failures.