In an age when multitasking is the norm and “to-do” lists seem longer than ever, it helps to take a step back and focus on what's important. CPNP is doing just that by devoting August's MHC to the topic of “Psychotropics in the Child-Bearing Woman”. What could be more important than protecting the health and well-being of an unborn baby by safely managing Mom's mental illness? For example, avoiding well-known teratogens such as valproate can decrease the risk of autism spectrum disorder and developmental delay. CPNP members are frequently called upon to recommend pharmacotherapy during pregnancy and lactation. This issue of the MHC will provide members with the most current information to help patients, their families and care providers make informed decisions about psychotropic drug use in pregnancy.

Another focus of CPNP at this time is government affairs and comprehensive medication management (CMM). Past President Jerry McKee represented CPNP at a July 30 strategic planning retreat of the Joint Commission on Pharmacy Practice (JCPP). As noted in our government affairs article in this issue of CPNP news, CPNP is making sure that behavioral health is at the table during the transformation of the US health care system under the Affordable Care Act. A “value paper” is under development within CPNP's Government Affairs Council. This paper will describe how psychiatric pharmacists can improve mental health care in primary care clinics and really at all points of care. Look for a webinar on comprehensive medication management in September and more programming at the Annual meeting in Phoenix.

August marks the start of school for many children, adolescents and young adults; competition and pressure to achieve can increase anxiety, depression and insomnia in youth. CPNP members can help clinicians, school systems and universities recognize students who need mental health evaluation and treatment. CPNP members involved in teaching and mentoring students and residents can utilize resources on to enhance pharmacy student and resident learning experiences in psychiatry and neurology.

It's the time of year when NAMI hosts its annual, “Walk for the Minds of America”, held the first weekend in October. Getting young people in the community to walk for NAMI can raise awareness on mental illness and decrease the stigma associated with getting treatment. USC School of Pharmacy is once again, putting a team together. CPNP continues its strong partnership with NAMI through participation in the NAMI Convention, by authoring medication fact sheets for the NAMI website and by contributing, “Ask the Psychiatric Pharmacist” entries on

Lastly, I'd like to encourage you to focus on your own professional fulfillment by staying active and engaged in CPNP. One easy path to engagement is to respond to an “Opportunities for Involvement” email distributed every Wednesday. The MHC needs peer reviewers, authors and guest editors. There will be a call for committee volunteers and nominations for leadership positions in the fall. Sharing a clinical pearl or practice challenge with colleagues on the listserv is another way to stay active and engaged in CPNP, improving minds and lives along the way!