FARGO — North Dakota State University announced Friday, Sept. 17, the creation of the Center for Collaboration and Advancement in Pharmacy (CAP) — an initiative to help improve public health.

The center's formation comes as North Dakota faces a shortage of health care providers. The center aims to improve patient care through training, offering resources and providing interventions based on research, Dr. Elizabeth Skoy, director of the CAP center and an associate professor of pharmacy practice at NDSU, said in a statement.

The center also intends to help prepare health care students for their careers.

“We invite potential collaborators and researchers to work with us to create meaningful and sustainable change to better people’s overall health,” NDSU Department of Pharmacy Practice Chair Dr. Amy Werremeyer said in a statement. “This is an opportunity to enhance current programs or create new and sustainable initiatives in collaboration with pharmacists and other members of the healthcare team.”

Some of the programs possible through CAP include screening for diabetes, medication therapy management, identifying drug interactions, helping people quit tobacco, making access to vaccines easier, remote patient monitoring and chronic disease management, the university said.