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  •  Rome Memorial Hospital pharmacist receives board certification as a Geriatric Pharmacist

    Rome Memorial Hospital pharmacist Laura Lonergan, R.Ph, BCGP, has earned board certification as a geriatric pharmacist from the Board of Pharmacy Specialties.

    “I am very proud of Laura for taking the initiative to obtain this certification,” said Scott Burns, R.Ph., director of pharmacy at the hospital. “The exam is rigorous and few pharmacists pursue this level of expertise. Certification is evidence of her advanced knowledge and experience in meeting the unique needs of older patients.”

    With 32 years of experience, Lonergan oversees the pharmaceutical care for the residents of Rome Memorial Hospital’s Residential Health Care Facility, which has earned the highest five-star ratings for quality. In her role, she reviews each resident’s medication regimen and champions initiatives for patient safety and appropriate medication utilization. For example, she monitors antipsychotic medications to prevent overuse in the elderly and is responsible for Antimicrobial Stewardship Program in the skilled nursing facility.

    “Laura’s expertise is also valuable to the hospital, which earned national recognition as a NICHE (Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders) facility,” Burns said. “In our journey to become a Senior Center of Excellence, we are developing a discipline of care that recognizes the unique needs of our patients at every stage of life.”

    “The clinical role of the pharmacist continues to expand, especially for our older patients and residents that may be taking multiple medications to treat several health issues,” Lonergan said. “Managing medications in the elderly requires an understanding of the physiological and cognitive changes associated with aging to manage symptoms and promote wellness and overall quality of life.”

    “I pursued the advanced certification to ensure that I had the most advanced skills necessary for meeting the medication-related needs of our older patients and residents,” Lonergan said. “As a consulting pharmacist, I am part of an interdisciplinary team that is committed to providing the best possible care to all those we serve.”

    A graduate of the Albany College of Pharmacy, Lonergan joined Rome Memorial Hospital in 2005.

     Laura Lonergan 
    Laura Lonergan, R.PH, BCGP