Changes in Long-term Care Pharmacy Practice

If the separation of consulting pharmacy goes ahead as planned, does this mark a setback or an advancement for the field?

CMS is proposing a change in long-term care pharmacy practice. By January 2013, consulting pharmacy must be separated from the company that supplies the drugs. I wonder why this separation is being proposed.

If this change is implemented, would it be advancement for pharmacy in general and consulting pharmacy in particular? Is this further evidence that the drug product has become a commodity business? If CMS mandates this in nursing homes pharmacy practice, could it follow that medication therapy management activities would have to be performed by an entity separated from the company that supplies the drug products in the community or mail order setting too?

This does sound like an opportunity for a new pharmacy business model that could meet both nursing home and community pharmacy needs. Does this look like a new opportunity to you, too?