National pharmacy groups celebrate Women Pharmacist Day

Several national pharmacy associations are celebrating Women Pharmacist Day Oct. 12, a day created by Suzanne Soliman, PharmD, to honor female trailblazers in the pharmacy profession. 

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists said: “ASHP, inspired by our first CEO, Dr. Gloria Niemeyer Francke, celebrates all women in pharmacy, including technicians, pharmacists and students, who are committed to advancing practice and improving patient outcomes.”

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores tweeted: “We’re recognizing and honoring a very special group of heroes on #WomenPharmacistDay  —  thank you for all you do for your patients, communities and nation!

The University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy in Columbia tweeted: “Celebrate the gains that women have made in pursuing careers in pharmacy. Honor the trailblazers who have made progress possible. Recognize the contributions that women pharmacists make, each day, to delivering quality care in the community.”

HSC College of Pharmacy in the University of North Texas in Fort Worth tweeted: “Today is #WomenPharmacistDay celebrating the significant gains that women have made in pursuing careers in pharmacy. More than half of our faculty and pharmacy students are women, and we are so proud of our women #PharmacyLeaders and #FuturePharmacists! #HSCproud”

Dr. Soliman, chief academic officer of the Accreditation Council for Medical Affairs, said the date for Women Pharmacist Day was chosen because October is National Pharmacist Month. The 12th day was chosen to honor the first female pharmacist in the U.S., Elizabeth Gooking Greenleaf, who had 12 children. 

In the 1960s, women made up only 8 percent of all U.S. pharmacists, according to womenpharmacistday.com. By 2018, women made up 55 percent of the pharmacist workforce, and that number is expected to continue to rise. About 61 percent of the 14,000 PharmD’s earned in the U.S. in 2016 were earned by women. 

“It is critical to look to the past and to many women pharmacists who have broken new ground across the profession, and we honor and celebrate all of them. Many of these pioneers broke barriers and stereotypes and allowed all of us the opportunities that we have today,” Dr. Soliman said.

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