Alumni Profile: Dr. Sheila Albeke (’13)

Managed Care is a rapidly growing area of pharmacy practice and Dr. Sheila Albeke (’13) has been interested in managed care for some time. During school, she became interested in managed care during her P3 year and after doing several managed care rotations her P4 year she felt she had finally found her forte in pharmacy. She is now working full time as a clinical pharmacist at PacificSource Health Plans in Bend, OR.

Albeke, Hannah Sheila

Sheila recently took time to share her story:

“My story starts 10 years ago when I walked into my first chemistry class to fulfill my science elective. As the weeks went on, I discovered chemistry was not as terrible as having teeth extracted, and by the end, I redirect to a chemistry-focused career. A pharmacy degree jumped out as an opportunity to practically apply science to better the lives of others.

“I started pharmacy school bright eyed and bushy tailed with no real direction of what I was going to do with a PharmD degree. As each term passed, I was forced to face the reality that I was not finding my niche. I worked at a community pharmacy, had hospital rotations, was part of unique outreaches; but when I went home at night I was never satisfied I could do any of those for the next forty years.

“Third year of pharmacy school the field of managed care was mentioned as a fourth year rotation opportunity. At first glance this new field appeared promising – learning new pharmacy information and applying that knowledge to whole populations to improve lives with more effective, affordable care. After rotations with Moda, RegenceRx, and CareOregon, I was sold.

“At an OSPA conference a classmate introduced me to Josh Bishop (’06), Director of Pharmacy Services at PacificSource Health Plans. He mentioned he was interested in starting a managed care residency. After a few emails and a nerve-racking interview, I was offered and accepted the position. As the first resident with PacificSource and Mosaic Medical, I helped define the roles of pharmacy services. I developed two pharmacist run collaborative practices and established provider confidence in pharmacists through medication reviews and curbside consultations. I helped bridge the gap between the health plan and the clinic by providing Mosaic Medical formulary utilization/navigation tools and PacificSource an understanding of the real life challenges of implementing formulary management.

“Through fortuitous timing, I was able to accept a full-time position with PacificSource Health Plans. In the few short months as the clinical pharmacist, I have had opportunities to grow professionally and personally. I make a difference in peoples’ lives on a daily basis by working with a team of health care professionals to come up with creative care plans for complex patients, meet one-on-one to improve medication lists, and review new medications for formulary placement based on safety and efficacy. The best part is every day I am excited to come back.

“If you would have asked me the first day of chemistry class what my 10 year plan was – pharmacist, managed care, or Bend, Oregon would never have come up. Through the exceptional guidance, training, and support of the College of Pharmacy I graduated with unique direction to step into the role of expanding pharmacy profession. My advice to aspiring pharmacists is to network, keep an open mind, and don’t forget to dream big.”

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