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March 6, 2018

UNE, CVS Health partner in specialty pharmacy residency program

Courtesy / University of New England
Courtesy / University of New England
Students enrolled in the University of New England College of Pharmacy will have opportunities to participate in a residency training program in specialty pharmachy through a partnership with CVS Health. The fastest-growing segment of the pharmacy industry, specialty pharmacy focuses on high-cost, high-touch medicines for patients with complex diseases.

The University of New England College of Pharmacy is partnering with CVS Health to offer a residency training program in specialty pharmacy.

The fastest-growing segment of the pharmacy industry, specialty pharmacy focuses on high-cost, high-touch medication therapy for patients with complex diseases and conditions.

With this partnership, UNE is part of a select group of universities in the United States offering this specific program, which has an agreement through June 2020 and continues a partnership established by UNE and Portland-based Apothecary By Design. Recently acquired by CVS Health, Apothecary By Design will remain a provider of specialty pharmacy services to patients with chronic, complex diseases at its Portland location.

The UNE-CVS Health resident will be based at Apothecary By Design and will be an employee of CVS Health.

According to the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, there are currently more than 1,700 pharmacy residency programs in the country, but it's estimated that fewer than a dozen concentrate in specialty pharmacy, according to UNE's College of Pharmacy.

UNE stated in a news release that the residency will allow pharmacists to learn from real-world experience with "specialty" medications, which typically involve unique handling and administration requirements. It will provide hands-on management and clinical training around conditions such as organ transplant, hepatitis C, HIV and rheumatoid arthritis.

Kenneth McCall, associate professor for UNE's Department of Pharmacy Practice, serves as director of the program.

Amy Oliveira, senior director of pharmacist talent acquisition for CVS Health said the partnership with UNE will give pharmacy graduates a unique opportunity to be "exposed to a growing part of the pharmacy business and be armed with the skills and expertise they need to care for patients with complex and chronic conditions."

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