Cheng and Panahi top 132 other teams to win national clinical skills competition

A pair of UCSF PharmD students brought home the win in the 28th annual Clinical Skills Competition of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), with team members Linda Cheng and Siavash Panahi, both Class of 2024, earning first-place honors on December 4, 2023, in Anaheim, California.

This is the third time a team from the School has won the clinical skills title. This national interactive competition challenges student pharmacists to analyze complex patient case scenarios and make treatment recommendations for them.

The scenarios represent situations participants may encounter when they practice as pharmacists, while giving them the opportunity to enhance their skills in collaborative practice with physicians who provide direct patient care. This year, the event drew teams from 133 schools and colleges of pharmacy.

Participants navigated patient cases while making critical decisions to ensure optimal patient outcomes. The cases are often based on a real patient case or the cumulative clinical experiences of the case writer. Topics run the gamut of pharmacotherapy, often focusing on a core topic such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, or anticoagulation.

Mike Trillanes, PharmD, faculty advisor of UCSF’s chapter of the California Society of Health-System Pharmacists (CSHP), expressed pride in the students’ accomplishment, highlighting the dedication and hard work they invested in preparation for the competition.

“The ASHP national clinical skills competition is a rigorous test of a student’s clinical knowledge, critical thinking abilities, and presentation skills,” said Trillanes, who is also a neurocritical care clinical pharmacist and assistant clinical professor at UCSF. “Our students’ success not only reflects the quality of education at UCSF School of Pharmacy, but also positions our graduates as leaders in the evolving landscape of healthcare.”

Several additional problems in the competition also explored the depth of the student’s acumen, equipping the competitors with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in the dynamic field of pharmacy.

“We’re grateful to our advisor and all of our preceptors so far who helped us get as far as we did,” said Linda Cheng, PharmD. “One of the best parts was meeting all the other amazing students in the top ten finalists and making friends from around the country.”


UCSF School of Pharmacy Team Wins National Clinical Skills Competition

About the School: The UCSF School of Pharmacy aims to solve the most pressing health care problems and strives to ensure that each patient receives the safest, most effective treatments. Our discoveries seed the development of novel therapies, and our researchers consistently lead the nation in NIH funding. The School’s doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program, with its unique emphasis on scientific thinking, prepares students to be critical thinkers and leaders in their field.