Touro College of Pharmacy Educates Harlem Seniors on Medication Safety as Part of National “Patient Safety Awareness Week”

Date: March 09, 2012
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Barbara Franklin
Director of Communications
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Senior Medication Safety Event Teaches Tools to Avoid Medication Errors.

New York, N.Y. - Touro College of Pharmacy hosted a Senior Medication Safety Event this week to educate senior citizens about how to manage their medication, and “stay safe.” Seniors from the St. Nicholas Senior Center in Harlem as well as the community at large attended. The group also received blood pressure checks, one-on-one medication counseling from pharmacy students and faculty, and enjoyed warm and healthy meals while listening to panelists give presentations on safe healthcare practices, with a special focus on medication safety.

The program was held as part of Patient Safety Awareness Week, an annual event sponsored by the National Patient Safety Foundation. This year’s theme, “Be Aware for Safe Care,” focuses on the need to understand the importance of patient safety and recognize the efforts underway to improve safety in the United States and worldwide.

“We decided to focus on seniors, not only because they represent a very important part of our community, but also because they are very vulnerable to medication errors,” said Dr. Batoul Senhaji- Tomza, associate professor at the Touro College of Pharmacy, who organized the event.

Dr. Senhaji-Tomza began a panel discussion with a medication safety primer. Dr. Craig Kovera, associate professor at the College, followed with advice on how to read medication labels. Dr. Evangelina Davanos, a pharmacotherapy and nutrition support specialist at the Brooklyn Hospital Center spoke on the safe use of herbal medicines. Lastly, Dr. Nataliya Shinkazh, assistant professor and diabetes specialist, discussed safe practices surrounding diabetes and hypertension.

Touro College of Pharmacy, which opened in Harlem in September 2008, is committed to offering increased educational opportunities – especially in Harlem - through programs in pharmacy education, research and scholarship, and through service to the community and the profession.