When Patient Care is at the Heart of It
LEXINGTON, Ky. (August 19, 2020) – Beth Richter is known for her unwavering compassion and patient-centered outlook. A 2002 graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy (UKCOP), her influence on patient care continues to have a global impact.
Upon graduation, Beth accepted a fellowship position at the pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly. The company unites caring with discovery to create medicines that make life better for patients around the world.
During her fellowship, Beth worked as a clinical research scientist in the US Neuroscience Division, looking to improve treatment and find new uses for approved medications that addressed Schizophrenia. She worked closely with the Eli Lilly marketing team to make a difference in those battling mental illness. Their goal was to educate healthcare professionals (HCPs) on the proper treatment for mental health.
Beth says her most meaningful interaction as a pharmacist was her work on projects with the marketing team, “We developed education demonstrating what the disease can do to the life of a patient. Through a series of interviews with the patient, family, and healthcare team, we showed what receiving the right treatment plan alongside the right psychiatrist can do for a patient. I was overwhelmed with hope for patients with mental illness every time I saw the videos.”
After seven years as a clinical research scientist, Beth moved to Eli Lilly’s Global Medical Affairs Education Department. Their goal is to make patient care better through education and learning. The key question her team seeks to answer is What are the continuing medical education needs and gaps for HCP in specific therapeutic areas and geographies to ensure patient care?
Beth’s department is the centralized group that provides the foundation for all medical affairs employees globally responsible for HCP medical education. She is responsible for onboarding and training new department employees in Adult Learning and Instructional Design, policies and procedures, oversight of procedures, processes and tools, and leading the team’s quality assurance. Beth ‘teaches the teachers.’ She and the extended Medical Education team continue to impact HCPs through education in Canada, China, Japan, and emerging markets, even amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. They transform education into an impactful virtual learning experience. Her goal is to create a program that cares for people around the world, no matter their level of access.
"While at UK, I gained the ability to think strategically when making decisions about patient care. I was in school with some of the brightest people, and that experience prepared me to integrate into that kind of culture here at Lilly."
Beth attributes her success at Eli Lilly to her education at the UK College of Pharmacy, “While at UK, I gained the ability to think strategically when making decisions about patient care. “I was in school with some of the brightest people, and that experience prepared me to integrate into that kind of culture here at Lilly.” Beth’s mentor at UKCOP was Bob Kuhn, PharmD, who she says played a role in instilling the principle that the patient is at the heart of all we do.
Now that Beth’s work has a global reach, the challenges she faces are complex but rewarding. The opportunities she was afforded by UK give her the ability to see the big picture while also putting the patient first. “I still think UKCOP offered me the best education for anything I could have envisioned for the future,” says Beth. “It was hard, but hard presses you for success in the future.”