East Hawaii News

Pharmacist Honored with Annual Award by DOH

November 25, 2014, 11:55 AM HST
* Updated November 25, 3:05 PM
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The Hawai’i State Department of Health STD/AIDS Prevention branch has announced their 2014 Annual Suzanne Richmond-Crum Award recipient. Fred Cruz, R. Ph., will receive the annual award for his contributions to HIV/AIDS pharmacy services in Hawai’i.

Cruz has dedicated himself for more than 15 years to taking care of individuals affected by HIV/AIDS while serving as an HIV pharmacist for specialty pharmacy at CarePlus/CVS. In his role, his focus has always been to support HIV-positive clients so they are able to stay on their life-saving medications.

In addition to his dedication to patients Cruz is a mentor to students at the University of Hawai’i at Hilo College of Pharmacy.

“Fred would make an extra effort to call all of his patience, helping them deal with any side effect and helping to address any barriers to promote adherence to their medications,” said Cyril Goshima, M.D. “He would work with clients who has special requests like going out of town on a trip and making sure they had enough medications until they got back. Fred is the face of HIV medications in Hawai’i.”

As a pharmacist for more than 30 years, Cruz has served on the Board of Directors for the AIDS Community Care Team and as a member on the Hawai’i HIV Community Planning Group. As a member of the planning group, his perspectives and opinions on HIV treatment, service delivery, and client well-being issues.

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Among his many roles, Cruz has worked as a team member with Hawai’i AIDS Education Training Center to provide training for providers in Hawai’i and across the Pacific Islands.

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The Annual Suzanne Richmond-Crum Award was established to honor the competence and compassion Suzanne Richard-Crum demonstrated in her HIV/AIDS work. The award is presented annually to an individual for their outstanding contribution in providing HIV/AIDS services.

Richmond-Crum passed away in August 2004. She was the director of the Hawai’i Seropositivity and Medical Management Program of the DOH’s STD/AIDS Prevention Branch for more than 10 years.

Cruz will be honored at award ceremony on Dec. 1 at Luthern Church of Honolulu from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

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