Ron Pohar graduated with distinction from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Alberta in 1995 and began his career as a clinical pharmacist specializing in mental health, geriatrics and smoking cessation, particularly in those with mental illnesses. Ron has extensive training in the tobacco addiction and smoking cessation from the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health (CAMH). He has been involved with many smoking cessation initiatives including the Tobacco Reduction and Cessation (TRaC) Project and efforts to remove the sale of tobacco from pharmacies in Alberta. Ron has developed a number of smoking cessation training programs for healthcare professionals, including an accredited certificate level self-study program for pharmacists (Smoking Cessation: Counsel to Quit) and the CATALYST (Call to Action on Tobacco Addiction: A Model for the Busy Pharmacist) Program, a live program that has trained over 4,000 pharmacists across Canada in smoking cessation.
In his clinical practice, Ron works with inner city residents and those with mental illnesses to assist them in tobacco reduction and cessation. Ron has published a number of articles on smoking cessation and provides expert review in this area. His work in smoking cessation has been recognized with local, provincial and national awards. He received a Blue Ribbon Award from the Edmonton and Area Tobacco Reduction Network for his work in smoking cessation, the Nycomed Magnum Opus Award for his advanced training in smoking cessation and a Commitment to Care Award for Health Promotion for the development of the CATALYST Program. Ron was a recipient of an Alberta Pharmacy Centennial Award of Distinction and is an advocate for the profession of pharmacy through his work with a number of organizations and was a founding board member of the Alberta Pharmacists’ Association. In addition to his clinical practice, for over 15 years, Ron has worked as a medical writer, authoring print continuing education lessons for pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and other healthcare professionals on a wide range of clinical topics. He also serves as an expert reviewer of continuing education lessons. Ron has also developed and presented many live continuing education presentations on mental health, dermatology, smoking cessation and pharmacy business development.