As the healthcare system continues to move towards a higher quality and more efficient system of care, there are ways that pharmacists can play an integral role in improving patient outcomes and decreasing healthcare costs. Below, we discuss five areas where pharmacists can play a role in enhancing coordinated care.
Patients suffering from chronic diseases can get the help they need from pharmacists with regard to clinical outcomes and medication adherence. Good medication management includes addressing medication side effects and helping to create a medication schedule so a patient is better equipped to avoid common pitfalls. At Medly, we evaluate each particular patient’s needs and their particular medications too. Our pharmacists are available 24 hours a day, every day of the year.
For patients who have recently been discharged from the hospital, there’s an elevated risk of potential readmission. For these patients, pharmacists can assist in the detection of any discrepancies in medication types or dosage, and can also help transition the patient to outpatient life by creating a full medication list that includes updated information on new medications the patient was recently prescribed. At Medly, we work hard to identify the most accurate list of all of the medications a patient is currently prescribed by identifying the names, dose and dose frequency of each medication when potential gaps occur in treatment or with a particular medication or when a new medication is introduced. We’ll also perform this audit when a transition of care occurs - this is, when a patient moves from one setting such as a hospital, long-term healthcare or rehabilitation facility to another or back to their home.
Pharmacists can also provide medical screening programs to patients in the community. This can include offering tests for conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes, which can pose more serious health threats if left unchecked. Finally, as most people know, pharmacists play an important role in immunization services, such as the distribution of the COVID-19 and annual flu vaccines. At Medly, we provide our patients with annual check-up reminders, flu shots, preventative tests, screenings and vaccine boosters.
Pharmacists can counsel patients in regard to their behavior and medical adherence, which can have a therapeutic role for patients with chronic conditions. They are also in the unique position to be able to offer help and treatment options for health concerns such as smoking, weight loss and depression. These interventions can have several positive outcomes for patients in maintaining their health and safety. At Medly, we educate our patients so that they understand exactly how to properly take their medications.
When pharmacists are involved in a team-based medical model, this can greatly improve patient’s conditions and can lessen the need for doctor-provided health care options. They can also provide primary care services, medication management and drug adherence programs. At Medly, we have a collaborative care model that involves a systematic approach to the treatment of many patients’ disorders. This care model involves the full integration of care managers, physicians, and any other primary care providers. It allows the team to proactively manage a patient's needs and provide the highest health care services to benefit the patient.