Erstad to head Pharmacy Practice & Science

Brian Erstad has been selected as head of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science effective March 18.

A member of the department since 1988, Erstad has served as interim head since February 2012. He was assistant department head from 1997 through 2011. He also is a clinical pharmacist in critical care at the University of Arizona Medical Center-University Campus and the program director of the college’s Postgraduate Year Two Critical Care Pharmacy Residency there.

“The new strategic directions and plans for the university, the health sciences and particularly the College of Pharmacy point to Brian as the ideal person to lead the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science,” Dean J. Lyle Bootman says. “Brian’s 20-plus years of experience at a Research One university and as a faculty member within a highly complex health sciences center will serve us extremely well.

“I am impressed by his broad collection of skills and experience, and extremely excited about his plans and strategy for the department and college.”

"Dr. Erstad is a well-respected clinician, teacher and scholar, and he would be a top candidate for such a position in any college of pharmacy,” says Michael Katz, chair of the search committee for a department head. “While his national and international stature will only enhance UACOP's status externally, we know that he also will serve as a terrific mentor for our students, residents and faculty."

Erstad’s research interests pertain to medication safety and related outcomes research. He is currently a member of the FDA’s Drug Safety and Risk Management Advisory Committee and a steering committee member of the United States Critical Illness and Injury Trials (USCIIT) Group.

Erstad earned a BS in pharmacy in 1976 from South Dakota State University and a PharmD in 1987 from UA. He is the first pharmacist to receive the Shubin-Weil Master Clinician/Teacher Excellence in Bedside Teaching Award given by the Society of Critical Care Medicine. A fellow of both the American College of Clinical Pharmacy and the American College of Critical Care Medicine, he received the ACCP’s Clinical Practice Award in 2004. He also has been recognized for outstanding contributions multiple times by the Society of Critical Care Medicine.

The new department head also has a long history of leadership and service in professional organizations, including ACCP, the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the Arizona Pharmacy Association.

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