In our last 2 issues, I focused on the turbulent times of health insurance coverage and the enormous impact it would have on the retail pharmacy landscape and the consumer. Indeed, the predicted difficulties did, in fact, happen.
Medication Therapy Management: Embracing Opportunity, Facing Challenges, and Preparing for a World of Change
The Affordable Care Act has succeeded in creating momentum in the world of medication therapy management (MTM), and with Medicaid programs expected to take on millions of additional Americans, the healthcare industry will become more reliant on pharmacy services. Through initiatives such as accountable care organizations and pay-for-performance models, the insurance marketplace is challenged to become more innovative and efficient.
Our fast-paced, task-oriented society demands more and more from us each and every day, eating up the free time we strive to obtain and creating obstacles that we attempt to conquer. Having too many tasks to accomplish, too little free time to do them, a decreased quality of life as a result, and the barriers caused by chronic diseases place exercise on the back burner for most people.
To obtain an external view of our profession, I usually find it valuable to review articles about pharmacy that come from outside healthcare. Consumer Reports surveyed 33,000 consumers about their pharmacy selection, and recently published 10 reasons people consider when switching pharmacies.
Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States. More than 700,000 Americans have a stroke each year, and approximately 25% of strokes are recurrent. Fifteen percent to 30% of patients who survive a stroke have permanent disabilities.
Implementing a medication synchronization program is the most effective method for pharmacies to improve medication adherence, take control of their businesses, and improve patient health. The program enables pharmacies to time patients’ use of medications for chronic conditions and ensure prescription filling at the same time each month.
Stroke risk factors can be divided into 2 categories: nonmodifiable and modifiable. Nonmodifiable risk factors include age >55 years, heredity (family history of stroke), race (African American), gender (male), and previous history (stroke, transient ischemic attack, or heart attack). Understanding nonmodifiable risk factors is important, because these are the patients who have the most to gain from working on controlling modifiable risk factors.
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