Saúde27 dezembro, 2023

A generational dedication to pharmacy and to patients

Christian Hartman serves as Vice President, Product Innovation for the UpToDate and Medi-Span solutions. A third-generation pharmacist, he has witnessed the industry shifts first-hand – which will continue as his daughter now pursues a career in pharmacy.

What is the legacy of pharmacy in your family? How did you get into the profession yourself?

My grandfather, a pioneer in his own right, graduated in 1952 from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy (MCP) in Boston, Massachusetts, and chose entrepreneurship by opening a corner drug store in the nearby town of Melrose. His dedication to the profession spanned decades and his service was woven into the fabric of the community. My father continued this legacy, graduating from MCP in 1976 and running local pharmacies in Northern Maine. As a child, I remember hanging out in the pharmacy and seeing my father helping patients with their medications, providing an immense service to the community.

In 2001, I also graduated from MCP and started my professional journey alongside my wife – who is also a pharmacist! I took a very different path from my family and focused on medication safety and human research in academic medical centers, as well as focusing on digital engagement of patients, alternative care delivery models, and the use of artificial intelligence in decision making. My wife provided managed care services to patients with limited income and eventually she moved into medical writing. At its core, a pharmacist’s commitment to improving patient outcomes and ensuring the safe use of medications remains the same, regardless of how we form our careers.

How have you seen the industry shift over the years? How is the role of the pharmacist changing?

Over the generations, pharmacy has transformed in ways we could not have imagined. The very essence of the profession has evolved, shaped by advancements in technology, changes in healthcare systems, data analytics, advanced training, and a growing emphasis on patient-centered care. Artificial intelligence is revolutionizing drug discovery, treatment optimization, and care approaches.

Additionally, the role of pharmacists is expanding, branching out beyond traditional settings and into advanced practice settings. Pharmacists are becoming key players in integrated healthcare teams, focusing on preventive care, chronic disease management, and medication therapy management. It acknowledges the expertise pharmacists bring to the table and recognizes the pivotal role they can play in shaping the future of healthcare.

How do you feel now that your daughter, Brianna, has been accepted into pharmacy programs?

She is stepping into a profession deeply rooted in our family’s story – this fall was a blur of excitement as we celebrated her acceptance into schools of pharmacy, and I’m filled with pride, joy, and a touch of nostalgia. It’s heartening to see the fourth generation of Hartmans taking the helm at a time when the profession is holding fast to its roots while embracing the future. I’m immensely proud of her and am excited for the next chapter in our family’s pharmacy legacy and for the boundless possibilities that await her.

What advice do you have for future pharmacists?

They are entering pharmacy when the profession is at the cusp of significant change and has always been diverse in the scope of practice and the individuals it attracts. From community pharmacists like my grandfather to the academic settings that I navigated, pharmacists play a crucial role in healthcare and patient outcomes. It’s a profession that demands not only scientific acumen but also compassion, empathy, and a keen understanding of the communities and patients we serve.

If I could share anything, I’d want them to remember a few key principles:

  1. Focus on patient-centered care: Always prioritize the well-being of your patients. Listen to their concerns and advocate for their needs.
  2. Continuously learn: Stay curious and embrace lifelong learning. The field of pharmacy is dynamic and staying current with the latest research and technologies is essential.
  3. Be adaptable: Be prepared to adapt to changes in healthcare. Embrace innovative technologies and practices that enhance patient care. I am sure very few of our peers thought that pharmacists would play such a crucial role during the COVID pandemic.
  4. Have compassion and empathy: Never lose sight of the human aspect of healthcare.
  5. Advance the profession: Pharmacists are the most highly trained clinicians with medication therapies in the healthcare setting. Lean into advanced practice settings as a provider.

I encourage them to embrace this evolution and to be a proactive participant in shaping the future of pharmacy in the years to come. The profession is not just a career; it’s a calling and a chance to make a tangible difference in the lives of those who rely on our expertise. The next generation has a unique vantage point to blend tradition with innovation, honoring the past while boldly stepping into the future.

Learn More About Medi-Span Clinical
Christian Hartman
Vice President, Product Innovation, Clinical Effectiveness, Wolters Kluwer Health
Christian Hartman, PharmD, MBA, FSMSO, is the Vice President of Product Innovation for UpToDate and Medi-Span, where he leads efforts to develop products that help the healthcare industry deliver effective services.
Embedded drug data and clinical screening modules to support appropriate medication prescribing
Organizations use Medi-Span® drug data and clinical screening modules to support appropriate medication decisions, and to help reduce prescribing errors by optimizing alert systems.
Back To Top