The L.A. Care Health Plan and Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) are partnering to launch the California Right Meds Collaborative, a pharmacist-led initiative founded at the University of Southern California (USC) to improve health outcomes in local communities, decreased health care costs, better allocate physician resources, and reduce unnecessary hospitalizations, according to a press release.

Pharmacists in the California Right Meds Collaborative program provide clinical services to Medi-Cal, Medicare, and Covered California patients in Los Angeles County and with IEHP who have persistently uncontrolled health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and asthma. Both the L.A. Care Health Plan and IEHP provide payment to participating pharmacists based on accomplishment of treatment goals.

“By leveraging community pharmacies as neighborhood-based health hubs, patients who struggle with chronic disease control have easy access to Comprehensive Medication Management, a service that optimizes medication therapy,” said program founder Steven Chen, associate dean for clinical affairs at the USC School of Pharmacy, in a prepared statement. “The California Right Meds Collaborative, focusing on population health priorities, allows pharmacists to collaborate with physicians to fully utilize their training for the benefit of patients, physicians, and health plans and the community.”

Specifically, patients with diabetes who are referred to participate in the L.A. Care California Right Meds Collaborative pilot program meet regularly with their pharmacist—in-person or through telehealth visits—for Comprehensive Medication Management, which includes evaluating all medications and making changes or recommendations in partnership with the patient’s physician.

Patients are able to receive education and counseling on proper medication use and self-management, along with receiving extensive monitoring for efficacy/safety and dose adjustments.

Further, many of the pharmacists selected to participate in the California Right Meds Collaborative pilot program have said that the initiative is giving them a way to leverage their training and contribute to the health of their local community.

Through the California Right Meds Collaborative, incentives are aligned to put the patient’s needs first, allowing patients to spend time with pharmacists to optimize medication therapy leading to increased physician, availability and access, and satisfaction.

“California Right Meds Collaborative is a bold and innovative way we can enhance the health and wellness services we offer our members,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP chief executive officer in a press release. “This program meets our most vulnerable members right in their own communities and provides an invaluable amount of resources to them. We look forward to working with and financially supporting our local participating pharmacists in their service expansion.”


REFERENCE
L.A. Care Health Plan, Inland Empire Health Plan launch of Pharmacist Provider Program. L.A. Care Health Plan [news release]. Los Angeles, CA; October 22, 2020: L.A. Care Health Plan. Accessed October 22, 2020.  https://www.lacare.org/news/la-care-health-plan-inland-empire-health-plan-announce-launch-pharmacist-provider-program.