Walgreens: Face-to-face consults with pharmacists, retail clinicians reduce health spend
LAS VEGAS — Walgreens last week outlined how the company's research has demonstrated the ability of face-to-face pharmacy and Take Care Clinic programs to drive better health outcomes at the IMS Managed Markets Services/Data Niche Conference held here.
Some of the savings advantages inherent in the offerings provided by Walgreens include:
The impact of pharmacist-led intervention programs for diabetes patients, which through face-to-face counseling have been found in a recent study to drive a statistically significant reduction in levels for A1C, blood pressure and LDL;
The impact of community pharmacy on influenza immunizations, where a recent retrospective study showed that in 2009-2010, more than one-third of Walgreens flu immunizations were administered in pharmacies located in medically underserved areas. In states with the largest MUAs, Walgreens provided up to 77% of its flu shots in MUAs; and
The effect of pharmacists educating at-risk patients on the importance of receiving a pneumococcal vaccination. The study found 4.9% of the at-risk population immunized for pneumococcal disease, compared with 2.9% of at-risk patients in a traditional care benchmark population. The difference is an increase of 68% over benchmark.
"The power of pharmacist and nurse practitioner-led, face-to-face programs is clearly demonstrated," stated Robert London, Walgreens national medical director. "Whether delivered through a community pharmacy, retail clinic or worksite health center, these interactions allow for an individualized approach to disease management while meaningfully improving health outcomes," he said. "The Medicaid population in particular stands to benefit from these types of outcomes-driven, face-to-face programs. With a huge expansion in the Medicaid eligible population looming, cost control becomes even more important. It will be vital to find solutions, such as those offered by Walgreens, to help improve patient health while ultimately reducing costs."