Focus of Societal Responsibility in the Vision and Mission Statements of the United States Pharmacy Schools/Colleges 

By Mohammed Islam, PhD, RPh 

Social accountability is essential in shaping future healthcare education, research, and medical care in response to present and future societal needs. The World Health Organization (WHO) has defined social accountability in medical education as “the obligation to direct their education, research and service of activities towards addressing the priority health concerns of the community, region and/or nation that they have a mandate to serve. The priority health concerns are to be identified jointly by governments, health care organizations, health professionals, and public.”  In recent years, the issues of social justice and social accountability in healthcare education have come to the forefront.3  The onus has been on health education institutions to be responsive to societal needs. Their mission statements make them ideal starting points for examining the self-defined purposes of U.S. healthcare institutions and their roles in addressing the nation’s health care challenges. A few studies involving the textual analysis of medical school mission statements have examined the implicit social contract between the medical schools and society.  

AUHS School of Pharmacy faculty members Drs. Mohammed Islam, Suhui Yang, Radhika Kumar, and Arjun Dutta recently published an article, “Focus of societal responsibility in the vision and mission statements of the United States pharmacy schools/colleges” in the journal Pharmacy Education ( The authors collected the vision and mission statements of 142 pharmacy programs by visiting each program’s website. The statements were compiled and uploaded in NVivo 13, a qualitative data analysis software for textual and thematic analysis. Deductive qualitative analysis and topic extraction method were used to identify thematic dimensions of the vision and mission statements. The prominent themes that emerged in the vision and mission statements included education, research, and professional service to society at large. There is a distinctive lack of citations of societal responsibility towards underserved populations in the vision and mission statements. The article is available at: 

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