“Campbell has allowed me to explore my interests as well as develop my character, leadership, and professional skills.”
Pharmacy Alumna: Kezia Timmons
Where are you originally from? I have lived in North Carolina my whole life. Greensboro, NC to be exact!
Undergraduate Institution and degree: I attended Wake Forest University 2013-2017, where I earned my Bachelor of Science in Biology.
Can you tell me more about the DEAC in general? What it is, who it serves, etc.? DEAC stands for Delivering Equal Access to Care, which is affiliated with Wake Forest University whose mascot is the Demon DEACons. DEAC is a student-run, free medical clinic that provides quality care once weekly to those in and around the Winston-Salem community who lack insurance and primary healthcare. Ultimately, our goal is to care for the underserved through education, outreach, and optimizing health outcomes. We are able to provide them with preventative care and treatments as well as resources for continued, optimized health practices.
What is your role and how did you get involved? I heard about the role from the previous director, Dr. Morgan Gravely, who also attended Campbell. Having attended Wake Forest University and worked at CVS in the Winston-Salem area for four years, I wanted to give back to the community that I had grown to know and love. I am devoted to serving the underserved as well as developing my clinical and leadership skills; so, after speaking with her I knew I would be a perfect fit.
I served as one of two pharmacy directors. I was responsible for overseeing pharmacy volunteers, managing all things related to pharmacy and medications, as well as counseling patients and student volunteers on treatments. Things looked very different this year due to COVID-19, so the role offered expanded opportunities. As I transitioned, the DEAC clinic had closed down until further notice, which means I did not have the opportunity to attend a DEAC clinic night nor meet the executive team prior to starting the role! We launched telehealth within the first few months so that we could still serve our patients despite our physical location being closed.
April 2020 to February 2021 we provided medication reconciliations and patient education through telehealth as well as developing protocols for volunteers and the future leaders. Once the clinic reopened in a new location in February, we were able to transform the role of pharmacy in this setting and help the teams navigate safe and effective treatment regimens!
How did Campbell prepare you for this role? Campbell has a very similar program named “Campbell Free Clinic.” I have had many volunteer experiences in the clinic, so I had an idea of what to expect and what things should look like. Campbell also hosts interprofessional education symposiums (IPE events) that allowed me to experience working on interprofessional teams. I know what role each member from various professions have on the team, and I have learned to utilize them to optimize patient care.
The year prior I served as Mental Health Chair in the Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA) chapter at Campbell. This allowed me to cultivate my leadership skills as well as utilize my creativity to provide education to the community as well as my colleagues. There were so many opportunities to educate the local community that I took advantage of such as partnering with schools and local health departments and host health fairs. Campbell has allowed me to explore my interests as well as develop my character, leadership, and professional skills.
Do you have a job lined up post-graduation? If so, where/with who? I began my PGY-1 Residency at the end of June at the Salem Veteran Affairs Medical Center in Salem, Virginia. This role has allowed me to experience progressive pharmacy practices, explore both inpatient and outpatient responsibilities of a pharmacist, as well as embody the Veteran Affairs’ core values: Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect, and Excellence.
Is there anything else you’d like to add? My long-term goal is to be a psychiatric pharmacist who is able to provide comprehensive care to the underserved and DEAC, Campbell, and Salem VA have and will provide me with experiences to do just that!