Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 11

G R A D UAT I O N 2 0 1 8



aving spent the last seven years earning his PharmD through the Distance
Degrees & Programs, Lokendra Upadhyay is ecstatic to be able to spend
his weekends not studying. "For me, it's been a great investment of time
and energy," says Upadhyay.
Twenty-five years ago, Upadhyay had the opportunity to tack
one more year onto his BS and obtain his PharmD from CU but
declined. "I was ready to get out and start earning money. In retrospect, it would have
been a lot easier, but then I wouldn't have all my life experiences," says Upadhyay.
Throughout the last 25 years, Upadhyay's career has been varied, including informatics,
sales, marketing and consulting for a Pharmacy Benefits Management (PBM) firm. Except
for the first seven years, he's done "just about everything but count pills."
Now, as a consultant with Willows, Towers, and Watson (WTW), he helps large employers
like the University of Colorado analyze their total drug span, review drug utilization of their
workforce and make suggestions about why a program is a good fit. His recommendations filter
up to the C-suite level through the HR department. "I represent the client; challenging the
Lokendra Upadhyay graduates twice from CU Pharmacy.

Susan King
Tania Klachan
Tammie Le
Yeongsoon Lee
Sara Mahmoud
Lisa Marusic

Mengyan Li
Sulayma Naser Agha
Sheila Ng
Neveen Nofal
Doris Obiri
Da Oh

Obinna Okereke
Anu Oommen
Cordelia Osidele
Islan Osman
Neha Parmar
Kirti Patil

Beth Ritenour
Klip Tanabe
Mellissa Taylor
Bhikhu Tejura
Lokendra Upadhyay
Alice Varkey

PBM to prove why a specific program is good for the
company and its employees," says Upadhyay.
At WTW, he determines how many people the
program would affect, and the savings the company
might gain. But savings is a very small portion of
what he ascertains. "Contrary to what people might
think, employers want to provide benefits. They
don't want to interrupt members. I have to assess
the culture, the philosophy, the client's appetite for
disruption and if the program makes sense culturally.
It's not just about dollars and cents," he says. "There
are a lot of nuances and that's what I like about it."
Upadhyay's philosophy is that there's a lot more
choice in pharmacy than people realize. "There's more
even in retail. You just have to look for it." And even
though he's been involved in various aspects of pharmacy practice, he's come full circle to where he began.
In addition to his day job, Upadhyay recently
opened an independent pharmacy where he is using
the marketing and business skills he's acquired over
the years. He's hired a pharmacist to oversee and fill
the prescriptions, while he focuses on building and
managing the business - in his spare time! Of course,
he has more of it now that he has completed his
PharmD. "I'm so happy I went through the program.
What I learned will be very helpful in building my
business and addressing the distinct market needs,
providing personalized service like prescription
delivery and volume immunizations to local companies," says Upadhyay.
Housed in a building that Upadhyay and his
wife (a pediatrician) purchased, and nestled in an
industrial area, "I will need to be more creative than a
traditional community pharmacy," says Upadhyay. A
task which shouldn't be too difficult for this non-traditional student who will now add business owner
and entrepreneur to his resume. The building is
already fully leased out with three tenants including
a pediatric cardiology group, his wife's practice, and
the pharmacy.

Jing Wang
Brenda Williams
Julie Williams
Qiong (Joan) Wu
Mena Yaft


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018

In This Issue
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - In This Issue
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 2
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 3
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 4
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 5
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 6
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 7
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 8
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 9
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 10
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 11
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 12