Dr Kaitlyn Watson

Completed associate student
Dr Kaitlyn Watson

A registered pharmacist, Dr Kaitlyn Watson’s PhD investigated pharmacists’ roles in disasters, and identified the acceptance and expectations of pharmacists throughout the different stages of a disaster. Taking an all-hazard and inclusive approach, this research included key stakeholders from international disaster and emergency management organisations as well as pharmacy organisations. Pharmacists’ skills and knowledge are typically underutilised in disasters and it was identified that their abilities extend beyond the traditional role of logistics and supply management. There are multiple practice areas in a disaster in which a pharmacist’s expertise could be valuable in-patient care, logistics, governance and public health.

Kaitlyn’s research featured in Hazard Note 78 and she wrote for Fire Australia. She presented her findings at the Australia and New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management conference in 2019.

Currently living in Canada, Kaitlyn is the founder and CEO of Disaster Pharmacy Solutions and a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Alberta. She is a Fellow at the Higher Education Academy, Co-chair of the Primary Care Special Interest Group at the World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine and a local advisor for the Commonwealth Pharmacists Association.

Student project

This research is investigating the roles of pharmacists in Disaster Health Management in Natural and Anthropogenic Disasters, both within Australia and abroad. This research has the potential to create new roles for pharmacists in the pharmacy profession, with the prospective need for pharmacists to take on more responsibilities during humanitarian crises. This research will be able to identify areas where pharmacists can assist the multidisciplinary healthcare teams in disaster situations.
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