Recently named the first pharmacist to the National Academy of Medicine (former Institute of Medicine) Emerging Leaders in Health and Medicine Scholars Program, Jonathan continues his national-level leadership in pharmaceutical research
Congratulations to University of Washington School of Pharmacy alumnus, Jonathan H. Watanabe, PharmD, PhD, ’98, ’08, ’12, who has been named this year’s UW Pharmacy Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award Pharmaceutical Science and Research recipient.
As a UW undergraduate, Jonathan majored in Zoology before going to University of Southern California to earn his PharmD degree. He returned to the UW to earn a master’s and doctoral degree at The CHOICE Institute at the UW School of Pharmacy (then known as the Pharmaceutical Outcomes Research and Policy Program).
Jonathan was the original recipient of the prestigious UW/Allergan Post-doctoral Fellowship in Health Economics and Outcomes Research. His major research areas include: value of pharmacist services, affordability and access to medications, older adult medicine research and policy, high-risk medications and opioid use disorder.
In 2016, Jonathan was selected as the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) Anniversary Pharmacy Fellow. NAM fellows are chosen based on their professional qualifications, reputations as scholars, professional accomplishments, and relevance of current field expertise to the work of the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM).
Nationally recognized for his leadership and research, Jonathan’s research on cost of non-optimized medication regimens and policy recommendations on comprehensive medication management has been cited in successful legislation granting provider status for pharmacists. He collaborates with senior leadership of the Get The Medications Right Institute to improve patient care via clinical pharmacists nationally. In 2018, he was recognized as an NAM Emerging Leader in Health and Medicine. He serves the NASEM Forum on Drug Discovery and Translation: Examining the Impact of Real-World Evidence and was a contributor to the Making Medicines Affordable: A National Imperative report.
A board-certified geriatric pharmacist, Jonathan has been developing programs to improve clinical training for geriatric practice and research as an investigator for the San Diego geriatric workforce enhancement program (SD GWEP). As SD GWEP fellowship director, this includes training to improve whole-person older adult care with a real emphasis on pharmacists, with a mandate to disseminate research nationally. His research on increasing prices of Medicare Part D drugs was recently published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. This interdisciplinary program trains clinicians to get education in elder care facilities, emphasizing the important role pharmacists can play on the health care team, given the increasing role of medication in geriatric care. In addition, he has received Platinum, Gold, and multiple Bronze Awards from the Academy of Managed Care in Pharmacy (AMCP) for his research.
Jonathan stays active in the UW School of Pharmacy community, staying connected with clinicians, including at Mercury Pharmacy where he worked as a long-term care pharmacist, as well as serving as a preceptor for a recent CHOICE student, who recently graduated with his PhD.