The Interdisciplinary Research Conference allows students and faculty to share a variety of research findings with the Palm Beach Atlantic community. Every year, the conference is recorded on video to ensure the research and presentations are preserved for archival purposes, the participants and families and for anyone else interested in viewing the lectures. Below you will find a recap of the Interdisciplinary Research Conference 2019.
Pharmacists – Warriors in the Battle Against Opioids. That keynote message for this year’s conference comes from a PBA pharmacy graduate who knows warfare, figuratively and literally. Norman “Norm” Hooten entered the Lloyd L. Gregory School of Pharmacy after a distinguished career in the Army’s Special Forces. He earned his doctorate in pharmacy in 2016 and then did two years of post-graduate residency at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers in Orlando and West Palm Beach. He is now a clinical pharmacy specialist with the VA center in Orlando.
In the inpatient mental health unit of the center Hooten sees many victims of opioid overdose. “Vets are at about an equal risk of misusing opioids, but they’re probably at double the risk of dying of an overdose,” he said. “My goal is to potentiate the role that we play as pharmacists in solving the problem of substance abuse disorder, for vets, especially.
“We can make a difference in their lives,” he said. “Not just from managing their medications, but in being that person who gives them the support and encouragement they need along the way, that maybe helps guide them and give them hope for the future so they can prosper.”
Barbara Kelly, senior associate professor of pharmacy practice, recalls Hooten as a student “always responsible, always influencing others in an unassuming way and always grateful to be learning the field of pharmacy.” He had come to PBA as a veteran of the elite Delta Force, having led a team into what became the Battle of Mogadishu, the bloody operation depicted in the movie Black Hawk Down. While he was a pharmacy student he went on national television, helping to tell the Mogadishu story for 60 Minutes.