Farm life, Pharm life

The Pharm to Farm aspect of this rotation is very dear to my heart as the farm life used to be all I knew. I grew up on a cattle and row crop farm just south of Bevier, Missouri. Bevier is a close-knit community nestled in between several other rural towns. I drove a tractor long before I could drive a car. I showed cattle and horses in 4-H and spent most of my summer along side my dad working on our farm. Growing up in a small town also taught me the value of being an involved member in my community and how vital it is to take care of one another. I knew that the career I chose would have to allow me to help my fellow neighbors. At young age, I learned the significance of agriculture but experienced the limitations to resources that come with it.  In rural areas access to health care providers is limited.  Those living in rural communities may have to take long trips to see doctors that would be just around the corner in urban areas. Many farmers may not find it feasible to leave the farm for these long trips to get health care. So when I decided to seek a career in pharmacy it was my goal to improve the health care of the rural area I would make my home.

After 9 years of living off the farm, I recently married and moved back on a farm. After graduation as I return to rural northeast Missouri to practice, I hope that my experiences from the Pharm to Farm rotation can aid in my delivery to provide quality health care in a rural setting.  Medication is an essential part of health care, and it’s imperative that farmers know how to safely use their medication. Working long hours on the farm in close contact with heavy machinery and large animals puts farmers at greater risk for medication related injury.  This rotation has equipped me with the ability to educate farmers about their medication in a way that specifically relates to their way of life. I also learned how to assess their regimen for any safety concerns and can’t wait to take these skills with me in my career.

Alicyn Wyatt-Magruder, Pharm.D. Candidate 2016

Alex Schmuke and Alicyn Magruder, PharmD Candidates 2016, provide an outreach presentation "Your Pharmacist: An Accessible Resource and Advocate for Those with Brain Injury" in Independence, MO

Alex and Alicyn, provide an outreach presentation titled “Your Pharmacist: An Accessible Resource and Advocate for Those with Brain Injury” in Independence, MO

Over the past two months we have been involved with the Missouri AgrAbility Project. As a pharmacy student I have seen the importance of the services we are able to bring to rural populations.  Many times in these rural populations patients are at a disadvantage when it comes to healthcare needs.  We were able to bring education, resources, and health screenings to patients that were greatly in need of these services.  I have enjoyed being able to connect with people on a more personal level at their home while at the same time providing useful healthcare. The ability to connect all of the information with everyone involved between the patient, the physicians, and us is a great benefit to all parties involved as well.

Growing up in a rural community south of St. Louis has brought the need of healthcare to my attention. I am proud to say I was and will continue to be a part of the delivery of healthcare to patients in need.

Alex Schmuke, Pharm.D. Candidate 2016