PPA News

Posted by: Matthew Helms on Sep 19, 2019

As a professional association, we embrace our future and appreciate our past.  This communication is to inform you that as of November 1, 2019, we will be officially doing business as the Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA).

PPAG has grown and evolved throughout the years. In fact, previous Boards of Directors have changed the name of the organization two times. Founded in 1985 as the Pharmacy Directors of Pediatric Hospitals (PDPH), the organization then became the Pediatric Pharmacy Administrative Group (PPAG) in 1987. As the organization shifted to offering individual memberships and opened its doors to clinicians, the leadership once again changed the name to Pediatric Pharmacy Advocacy Group (PPAG) in 1992.

For over a year, the PPAG Board of Directors has been evaluating the name of the association and found itself facing the same questions previous Boards have addressed. Does our name and brand mark reflect our identity as an organization? Do our members support a name change? How do inside and outside constituencies perceive our name? What are the opportunities and challenges to maintaining or changing our name? 

In 2018, the PPAG Board of Directors commissioned a small Task Force to address these questions and develop recommendations. The Task Force used a three-pronged approach to answer key questions. First, the Task Force assessed the interest of our members for a name change through a membership survey. Secondly, we conducted targeted communications with specific constituencies to determine their opinion regarding our current name verses a name change. Specifically, we engaged our local affiliates, student groups, sponsors, exhibitors, and our Fellows. The founders and original charter group also provided valuable feedback to the Task Force. Thirdly, the Task Force investigated the financial and legal impact of a possible name change. From the three-pronged evaluation process, we discovered that a majority of our members supported a name change and if executed carefully, a name change could have minimal financial and legal impact while better reflecting the organization we have become.  Therefore the full Board of Directors voted to approve the name change from the Pediatric Pharmacy Advocacy Group (PPAG) to the Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA).

We also discovered that although a minority, some members were not supportive or were unsure. Fears of losing the unique identity we have built over 30+ years and concerns about costs were reported by members opposed or resistant to a name change. To address these concerns, the Task Force recommended that we revise (not replace) our current brand mark while maintaining our beloved “balloon kids.” We continue to emphasize the four (4) pillars of our mission: Collaboration, Advocacy, Research, and Education (CARE).


Over the next few months, our staff will be working diligently to execute the name change. Our goal is executed a plan with minimal impact on members. However, we wanted you to be aware what to expect over the next few months.

  1. The change will take place in stages. The first change you will see will be the new logo and name on our website and social media accounts.
  2. Your current username and password for any current PPAG website will NOT change.
  3. Memberships to Special Interest Groups, local communities, or student organizations will NOT change.
  4. The organization will soon release a new website URL (pediatricpharmacy.org). However, we will also retain ownership of ppag.org and you will be redirected to the right place if using an old bookmark.
  5. Staff emails will change. However, we will use a forwarding function so you will be able to use our current email addresses for the foreseeable future.
  6. If you are a Fellow, Student Group, or Local Affiliate you will receive a follow-up email with specific information about how the name change impacts you specifically. 


We, as an association, have experienced tremendous growth over the years while remaining at the forefront of advancing our profession (e.g., board certification, collaboration with other pediatric associations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and ongoing advocacy for the patients we serve). We, the Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA), are a testament to the strengths of a member-driven organization fueled by professional passion and dedication.  PPA will continue to embrace and emphasize CARE (Collaboration, Advocacy, Research, and Education). 

Thank you for all you do for the patients and families you serve, the profession, and the overall community.

Warmest regards,

Hanna Phan, PharmD, FCCP, FPPAG
President, The Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA), 2019-2020 

Matthew Helms, MA, CAE
Executive Director, The Pediatric Pharmacy Association (PPA)