Summer Intern Stories: Shyra Bias, Foundation/Pfizer Managed Care Research and Nonprofit Leadership Intern
The AMCP Foundation/Pfizer Managed Care Research and Nonprofit Leadership Internship takes place at AMCP Foundation headquarters in Alexandria, Va. The intern supports the Foundation’s mission to expand and promote medication-related research, and learns nonprofit management principles and develop personal leadership.
Name: Shyra Bias
College of Pharmacy: Howard University College of Pharmacy, Washington, D.C.
Anticipated Graduation Date: 2021
Internship Site: AMCP Foundation headquarters
It was my honor to serve as the 2019 Foundation/Pfizer Managed Care Research and Nonprofit Leadership Intern at the AMCP/Foundation Headquarters in Alexandria, Va. This summer was a life-changing experience and I am so grateful for the skills that I gained and the connections that I made.
I had the pleasure of working on three major projects surrounding these timely themes:
- Digital therapeutics (DTx)
- Biosimilar use in oncology patients
- Chronic pain assessment.
I conducted a cross-sectional study in preparation for AMCP’s September 2019 Partnership Forum titled “Digital Therapeutics: Where Are They and Where Do They Fit in Pharmacy and Medical Benefit?” I became very familiar with many different types of DTx products, and followed the emerging guidelines on regulating these products. The findings of my research were used to guide discussions of key stakeholders during the forum, which addressed barriers to including DTx on formulary. I attended the Partnership Forum and wish to thank Dr. Terry Richardson for entrusting me with this project.
With my Pfizer Medical Outcomes Specialist (MOS) Dr. John Spain, I used Stata to analyze data collected from a pain assessment that was given to patients at a military clinic. I learned some of the limitations that arise when surveying and recording information from patients. Dr. Spain also allowed me to shadow him many times in order for me to fully understand what his role entails.
I developed "Global Evaluation of Real-world Studies on Biosimilar Usage in Oncology," a systematic review in conjunction with Dr. Cate Lockhart and BBCIC. The review explored current systems used to house patient data on biosimilar use and identified the utility of the data extracted. I really enjoyed being able to apply skills that I learned in the classroom as I prepared a manuscript on the findings of this research.
Dr. Annesha White, AMCP Foundation Trustee and Assistant Dean at the University of North Texas, was my virtual preceptor and she was always just one phone call away. She scheduled time with me to discuss important topics in Pharmacoeconomics and research. Dr. White was an amazing resource anytime I had questions about my projects.
Paula Eichenbrenner, Executive Director of the Foundation, was my “in-house” preceptor and also amazing. We worked on leadership development and association management. Together we prioritized my growth in areas such as networking, a skill that I honed by attending many events with Paula. I also had the pleasure of presenting my research at Pfizer and AMCP headquarters which strengthened my public speaking skills as well.
Countless pharmacists and professionals took time out of their busy schedules to speak with me about my career goals and their current roles. I am so thankful to each of them for their advice. After this summer, I will never be the same. I have noticed my professional growth and I am so grateful for the opportunity. A huge thank you to the AMCP Foundation staff — Ebony Clay and Phil Schneider — as well as AMCP staff and all of my preceptors recognized above.