Pharmacy Professor Certified as Asthma Educator

by Public Relations

Cedarville University Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice Melody Hartzler, Pharm.D., became a certified asthma educator (AE-C) in September 2011 after passing the National Asthma Education Certification Board exam. She will use this knowledge to prepare students for the challenges they will face in asthma education as they practice pharmacy.

Hartzler received her doctor of pharmacy degree from Ohio Northern University and a teaching certificate from The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. She completed a residency in pharmacy practice at the Chalmers P. Wylie VA Ambulatory Care Center in Columbus where she specialized in ambulatory care.

Now in her second year of teaching at Cedarville, Hartzler serves as a clinical faculty member and will oversee pharmacy students during advanced clinical rotations. At her practice site, the Victor J. Cassano Health Center in Dayton, Hartzler provides clinical pharmacy services in a physician teaching facility. Hartzler has begun to see patients for asthma management and is working in collaboration with physicians to help patients achieve better asthma control.

“A lot of people minimize their asthma symptoms since they may have grown up with the condition, but 11 people a day in the United States die of asthma related complications,” Hartzler said.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 7.7 percent of adults and 9.6 percent of children in the United States suffer from asthma. Hartzler says asthma is prevalent in urban areas and inner city populations often due to environmental factors.

Hartzler hopes to also offer an elective course at Cedarville in ambulatory care. She says ambulatory care is a growing area of pharmacy, where pharmacists meet directly with patients in an outpatient setting. Hartzler focuses on empowering people to make decisions for themselves and provides patients with resources to take the steps to improve their health care.

“As the role of a pharmacist continues to evolve from the traditional dispensing roles, ambulatory care is just one setting where pharmacists can contribute to improved patient care,” Hartzler said.

Hartzler is now one of over 3,000 certified asthma educators in the health profession, and she looks forward to bringing her expertise to the classroom.

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University attracts 3,300 undergraduate, graduate, and online students to more than 100 areas of study. Cedarville is a Christ-centered learning community recognized nationally for rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. Visit the University online at