BSc(Pharm), RPh, ACPR, MSc, Dipl (Epi&Biostats), PhD, FCSHP
Dr. Judith Soon is an assistant professor in the UBC Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, an associate member of the UBC School of Population & Public Health and the UBC Department of Family Practice, and a member of the Women's Health Research Institute. Following her BSc(Pharm) degree at UBC, she completed a hospital pharmacy residency at St. Paul's Hospital, practiced on an interprofessional geriatric team, and was a drug information specialist at the BC Drug and Poison Information Centre. Subsequently, she developed and maintained a province-wide consultant clinical pharmacy program for 55 long-term care facilities serviced by community pharmacies. She initiated an innovative multi-centre adverse drug reaction monitoring program within the long-term care setting, and was awarded fellow status in the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists. She returned to graduate school at UBC and completed her MSc and PhD studies with a focus on pharmaceutical outcomes research, and completed a diploma (epidemiology and biostatistics) at McGill University with a specialty in pharmacoepidemiology. Dr. Soon received numerous scholarships, including a MRC-CDMA-CEM Studentship in Pharmacoepidemiology. Prior to joining the UBC Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, she taught in the Entry-Level PharmD program at the University of Washington School of Pharmacy.
Her teaching responsibilities include pharmacotherapy in reproductive and sexual health, the conduct of Aboriginal health research, educating students about interprofessional roles in patient-centred care, and incorporating the patient voice into clinical practice initiatives.
Dr. Soon is the national mifepristone pharmacist expert on Mifegymiso® (Health Canada approved July 2015) for the Canadian Pharmacists Association. She is actively involved in the development and dissemination of mifepristone educational and professional initiatives to pharmacists across Canada. She is a founding member of the Contraception Access Research Team (CART-GRAC) and Canadian Abortion Providers Support (CAPS) Community of Care, and assisted with the development of the SOGC Clinical Guidelines for medical abortion and the Mifegymiso Training Program. As Health Canada originally specified mifepristone could only be dispensed by physicians, she collaborated nationally with physician experts to successfully enable pharmacists to be able to stock the drug, dispense prescriptions, enter data into provincial drug databases and facilitate billing procedures.
As director of the BC Community Pharmacist Research Network (CPRN) of nearly 200 pharmacies from 2000-2013, Dr. Soon developed and maintained the ability of the CPRN to collect real-time clinical data. The network has been utilized in multi-university, multidisciplinary and mixed methods studies, including emergency contraception. Through these activities, she has developed substantial expertise to conduct collaborative projects involving health policy decision-makers, academics, advocacy groups and community healthcare professionals.
Dr. Soon conducts interdisciplinary reproductive health research and pharmacoepidemiologic studies evaluating changes in medication access and outcomes related to health policy, system and service factors. Beginning in 2000, she developed with UBC colleagues an extensive CIHR-funded mixed-methods research program into the public health impact of policy that granted pharmacists authority to provide emergency contraception (EC) to women without a physician prescription. The BC Linked Health Database, including PharmaNet with population-based patient-specific prescription data, was used to evaluate the health policy initiative. EC usage more than doubled within two years following pharmacist EC provision, and prescriptions for EC increased substantially in rural and remote communities. Related research initiatives included surveys evaluating EC knowledge among women attending abortion clinics; barriers to EC use among Aboriginal women; and an economic evaluation of EC use.
On November 29, 2016, she was invited as an international EC expert to provide an "Emergency Contraception Update" for the Malta Chamber of Pharmacists in Valletta, Malta. This informed the seminar on the Emergency Contraceptive Scientific Facts: Ethical and Legal Issues, and in mid-December 2016, ulipristal and levonorgestrel became available over the counter in Malta.
In collaboration with the UBC Youth Sexual Health Team, research she conducted among rural and northern youth identified many did not realize they had the right to confidential, convenient access to birth control. As a component of knowledge translation, a youth-friendly Youtube video called "Know Your Birth Control Rights" was designed to share how healthcare providers can help individuals choose and access birth control that fits their lifestyle. The video is promoted on the BC School counsellors site for grade 10 students and is posted on community and healthcare websites in the province.
"2017 Patient Care Achievement Award for Innovation." Soon, J. Canadian Pharmacists Association. June 2, 2017.
"2016 Education Award." Soon J. Options for Sexual Health. October 21, 2016.
"Youth Science Canada Distinguished Service Award." Soon J. Youth Science Canada. May 16, 2011.
"CIHR ICE Career Transition Award". Soon J. CIHR. March 29, 2006.
"CEM/CDMA/MRC Studentship in Pharmacoepidemiology." Soon J. Centre for Evaluation of Medicines/Medical Research Council. October 1, 1996.
"Exploring barriers and facilitators to medical abortion practice: A qualitative study with Canadian healthcare providers who choose not to provide mifepristone." Munro S (PI), Soon JA, Renner RM, Brooks M, Norman WV. $18,709. Society for Family Planning. 2017–2019.
"Mifepristone Implementation in Canada (The CART Mife Study)." Norman WV (PI), Soon JA and 18 co-investigators. $492, 500.CIHR PHSI Grant. 2016–2018.
"Human Resource and Educational Inventories Supporting the Life Cycle Approach to Regulation of Therapeutic Products." Soon JA, MacLeod SM (PIs). $88,810. Health Canada Office of Legislative and Regulatory Modernization. 2008–2011.
"Experiences with Contraception Among Youth in Northern BC: Exploring the Impact of Gender, Place and Culture." Soon JA (PI), JA Shoveller, N Hanlon, J Johnson, ME Kelm. $181,734 CIHR Operating Grant. 2007–2010.
"Population-based Comparison of Two Regimens for Emergency Contraception." Soon JA, Levine M (PIs), Ensom MHH, Fielding DW, Lynd LD, Marra CA. $110,946. CIHR Operating Grant. 2005 – 2007.
"Current Considerations in Reproductive Health: Questions and Answers for the Pharmacist." Soon JA, Yuksel N. Canadian Pharmacists Association Conference. Quebec City, QC. June 5, 2017.
"Medical Abortion: The Expanding Role of the Pharmacist." Soon JA. 28th UBC Continuing Pharmacy Professional Development Update 2017. Vancouver, BC. March 4, 2017.
"Emergency Contraception Update." Soon JA. Emergency Contraceptive Scientific Facts: Ethical and Legal Issues. Malta Chamber of Pharmacists. Valletta, Malta. November 29, 2016.
"Myths and Facts around Reproductive Health: What Pharmacists Need to Know." Soon JA, Ragsdale P, Gilbert K. Canadian Pharmacists Association National Webinar. Ottawa, ON. November 17, 2016.
"Mifegymiso for Medical Abortion: The Role of the Pharmacist." Soon JA. Canadian Pharmacists Association Annual Conference 2016. Calgary, AB. June 27, 2016.