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UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine Launches Veterinary Pharmacy Residency

December 1, 2003

The UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine has established a one-year residency in clinical veterinary pharmacy.

Valerie Wiebe, Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm. D.) and residency coordinator, states, "This is the first in-depth program for the pharmacist in a veterinary setting." The program is based at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital pharmacy. The residency provides practical training in the principles of animal medicine for pharmacists already trained extensively in pharmacology related to human medicine. The program was originally conceived by veterinary pharmacist Reed Enos, who presided over the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital pharmacy for 37 years before his retirement in 2001.

Margo Karriker, Pharm. D., a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Pharmacy, is the program's first resident.

"There is an ever-increasing complexity to what we do as pharmacists," says Wiebe. Residents will learn about drug effects on different species, expand their knowledge of veterinary-labeled drugs, and design a clinical drug study. Residents will have the opportunity to build research skills useful in pharmaceutical development or animal health research and develop an understanding of regulatory matters pertaining to livestock and food safety.

After completing the program, veterinary pharmacists may pursue careers in academic institutions--primarily veterinary schools--pharmaceutical companies, or regulatory agencies. "This profession has lots of niches in which pharmacists can become pioneers," Wiebe asserts.

The Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital has funded the residency initially and seeks ongoing private or corporate funding to support future residents. "Recognizing a clear need to train pharmacists in the specialty, the School of Veterinary Medicine took the leap," says hospital director Bradford P. Smith. "We are excited about our first resident and the contributions she will make to both our professions."

UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine conducts a statewide mission of teaching, research and service to benefit animal, human and environmental health.

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