From top to bottom, retail pharmacy will prove pharmacist role in improving patient outcomes
Pharmacy's value as part of an outcomes-based healthcare alignment was the highlight of the closing business presentation at the National Association of Chain Drug Stores' 2013 Annual Meeting. And now it's up to NACDS members to expose Congressional leaders to that value quotient on a regular basis.
That was the message shared by incoming NACDS chairman Bob Narveson. It goes to show that even as the gavel passes from the head of one of the industry's largest pharmacy chains to one of the smaller chains, innovation in patient care is happening at all levels.
"To be successful, we're going to have to maintain access to patients [incoming from the Affordable Care Act]," Narveson told DSN as part of a pair of exclusive video interviews. (The first video interview one can be found here.) "We're going to have to step forward and we need to get to the point where we realize that there's more to taking care of patients by just putting pills in a bottle" he said. "We have to get to the point where we have face to face MTM, where we're working with our patients on their medication adherence and where we continue to drive home that and we can prove it."
And both Narveson and Thrifty White, one of DSN's PoweRx Players, have put their money where their mouths are. Thrifty has enrolled as many as 24,000 patients on a Medication Synchronization Program, where patients receive all their medication refills on a single day. "We have people with as many as 20 medications on Medication Synchronization," Narveson said. "It's very difficult to maintain those pills on a regular basis," he added. "It's programs [like these] that need to be brought forward to help impact that $290 billion [in cost associated with medication non-adherence]."
According to a study conducted by Virginia Commonwealth University in 2012, patients enrolled in the program have 3.4 to 6.1 times better adherence rates vs. people not enrolled in the program.