Evolving Health Care Landscape Provides New Opportunities for Pharmacists' Patient Care Services

Published Online: Wednesday, May 21, 2014
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PRESS RELEASE

May 21, 2014, WASHINGTON, DC – National pharmacy organizations are pleased to announce the publication of a new Avalere Health report “Exploring Pharmacists’ Role in a Changing Healthcare Environment.” The independent report, available at http://avalerehealth.net/, explores how pharmacists’ services contribute to the health care system and improved patient health.

Avalere identified the most recent U.S. research articles and focused this report on four pharmacist services and one care delivery arrangement: medication management; medication reconciliation; preventive services (screening and immunization); education and behavioral counseling; and collaborative care models. According to the report, “many of the pharmacist services explored in this paper have been shown to improve therapeutic outcomes, adherence to medications, or reduced downstream healthcare costs.”

“Due to the health care coverage expansion, 20 million new lives are expected to enter the insurance market by 2015, with further projected increases in enrollment thereafter. Demand for health care services is expected to surpass supply in many areas across the country. In light of this, payers, providers, and policymakers are considering strategies to deliver more efficient care,” the report states.

The report summarizes, “The evidence around pharmacists’ impact on clinical and economic outcomes is growing, and overall, points to improving therapeutic outcomes and reducing costs,” and notes that “continued research that clearly reports the specific pharmacist services … and the impact these services have on outcomes and healthcare costs” can help to further inform policymakers and healthcare providers. This is especially true as the healthcare environment continues to change.

The report concludes, “As payment and delivery models, such as ACOs and PCMHs, become more prominent, they will further shape the opportunities for pharmacists to contribute their services to deliver more efficient patient care. Moving forward, it will be critical that reimbursement policies are aligned to incent appropriate utilization of pharmacist services in order to deliver the highest value healthcare to patients.”

The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP); American Pharmacists Association (APhA); American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP); American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP); National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations (NASPA); and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) provided funding for this research. Avalere Health maintained full editorial control and the conclusions expressed are those of the authors. Avalere Health is a strategic advisory company whose core purpose is to create innovative solutions to complex healthcare problems. Based in Washington, D.C., the firm delivers actionable insights, business intelligence tools and custom analytics for leaders in healthcare business and policy.
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