When the nation's pharmacistsbegin providing Medication TherapyManagement (MTM) services topatients under the new Medicare drugbenefit next year, they will have littleguidance from federal health regulatorsto use in designing specific serviceseligible for reimbursement under theprogram.
The American Pharmacists Association(APhA) and the National Associationof Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) aremoving to fill that void with a newmodel "framework"that identifies 5"core elements"for pharmacists toconsider using when providing MTMservices to patients.
Pharmacists who follow the modelwould provide the following basicMTM services to Medicare patientswho have >1 chronic disease, take multiplemedications, and incur high medicationcosts:
The APhA and the NACDS Foundationare planning to augment the newMTM model with a complete operationsmanual, forms, and MTM practiceguidelines for pharmacists andother pharmacy personnel.
Mr. Rankin is a freelance medical writer.