Betsy Sleath, Ph.D., is the recipient of the American Pharmacists Association Academy of Pharmaceutical Research and Science 2018 Research Achievement Award. The award recognizes outstanding, meritorious achievement in any of the pharmaceutical sciences.
Sleath is the George H. Cocolas Distinguished Professor at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy and chair of the Division of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy. She is the co-director of the NCTRACS Community Engagement Core and director of the child and adolescent health program at the Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research. She is also an adjunct professor in epidemiology and health policy and management at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She has been at the School since December 1995.
The award, offered annually, recognizes and encourages outstanding, meritorious achievement in any of the pharmaceutical sciences. The award covers the areas of basic pharmaceutical, clinical, and economic, social and administrative sciences. Applicants are judged on their established stream of research, international recognition, leadership and other recognition, new concepts and innovative research in pharmaceutical science and use and implementation of research by the profession, research community and other disciplines.
Sleath has been a member of APhA since she was a pharmacy student at the University of Connecticut. She said she credits the APhA with developing her leadership skills, and showing her just how many different opportunities there are for careers in pharmacy.
“As our Pharm.D. and Ph.D. students go to meetings, I see how the APhA helps them as well,” Sleath said. “It helps all of us become better pharmacists, researchers and teachers and improves our ability to care for patients.”
In her career, Sleath said she is most proud of the work she and her research team did optimizing medication use in children and an online module she created with faculty from University College London and Monash University to train pharmacy students on communicating effectively with adolescent patients. She hopes the module will help she and her team positively affect patient care globally.
Sleath said she was inspired to become a pharmacist by her grandmother, who instilled a love of science and learning in her; her mother, who worked at a local pharmacy when Sleath was a child; and a college professor, who exposed her to social research and encouraged her to pursue her postgraduate degrees.
Sleath will receive her award on Sunday, March 18, at the Second General Session of the APhA Annual Meeting at 9 a.m.