Joseph Hans, marketing program manager at PharMerica, understands the value and significance of I/DD services more than most people. “I am the parent of an adult child with I/DD. We’ve always done everything possible to raise him to be healthy and happy. He’s turned out well, but he still has some issues and requires some special care,” he says.
Priceless Knowledge of Navigation
It can be challenging to navigate the system to get the I/DD services and supports a family may need. However, Hans admits, he is luckier than most. He says, “My son’s mother works for the state, and she knows how to find the right people and work in the system. As a result, it was fairly easy to find supports for our son fairly early on.”
He and his family also were fortunate to live in Kentucky where there is a state program that outlines what services families might need for someone with I/DD. “This was key for us to begin figuring out what we needed to do for him. We also have been lucky to work with the school system and work well with teachers, principals, counselors, and others to get the services and supports for him.”
He adds, “I understand that not all parents have the same experiences. It can be intimidating to try and figure out all the players and where to go for help and support.”
The Joys of Colleagues with Shared Passions
Coming to PharMerica made Hans feel that he was with like-minded colleagues who are committed to ensuring that people like his son get the care they need and that parents like him get necessary support and guidance. “People who work here are concerned with patients’ well-being and health, including the issues we’ve faced with our son. From that perspective, it has been helpful and fulfilling for me to work here,” he says. He adds, “I love the idea that we are doing good work.”
That is particularly evident, he says, with PharMerica’s I/DD-related pharmacies. “These are really good people who are dedicated and concerned with making sure things are being done right. This is so important because a missed dose or a drug-drug interaction can be devastating. If my son was part of an I/DD provider served by this pharmacy, I would feel confident about his medications.”
He further notes, “it adds a level of confidence because these pharmacists understand I/DD. They care and are devoted to ensuring everything meets the highest standards.”
Personal Experience Leads to Professional Innovation
As a parent to a son with I/DD, Hans says, “My personal experience helps me in this job.” For instance, he put together a terminology list that helps differentiate I/DD and PharMerica’s skilled nursing business line for his colleagues and ensures that they’re connecting with clients and prospects properly and using the right language. Hans says, “I try to make a difference. I am committed to enabling our staff and others on our team to understand the roles we play and what they mean to our clients and their patients.”
Hans brings to his job a human side that helps him understand the needs and challenges of people with I/DD and their families and how PharMerica can help providers ensure individuals get the medications they need in a way that keeps them safe and maximizes their quality of life.
Ultimately, Hans has great loyalty to his son and his work. He says, “He’s a good kid and has a great attitude. He has the ability to roll with changes, and he functions well within that context. I’m proud to be his father, and I’ve learned a lot about myself as I’ve raised him; and I am glad to work for a company that is committed to supporting these organizations and individuals.”