Understanding and Exploring the Practice of Specialty Pharmacy - Episode 17

Segment 17: Managing Depression: Use of Counseling to Improve Outcomes

Ray Tancredi, RPh, MBA, CSP, vice president of specialty pharmacy development at Walgreens; Cheryl Allen, BS Pharm, MBA, vice president of business development and industry relations for Diplomat Pharmacy; Nicholas Karalis, RPh, of Elwyn Pharmacy Group; Stacey Ness, PharmD, RPh, CSP, MSCS, AAHIVP, director of specialty clinical services for Managed Healthcare Associates*; and Renee Rayburg, RPh, senior director of clinical consulting at Artemetrx, discuss the effective management of depression during the treatment of hepatitis C patients.

Karalis said there are standard protocols for questions patients, but noted that when a patient indicates they have depression, the prescriber provides available options that typically come back to oral high cost dual agents. Ness emphasized the importance of depression screening in any chronic condition because of the associated risk of non-adherence to therapy.

With the flood of highly effective treatments hitting the market, Allen said that real world outcomes in terms of a sustained virological response would be the determining factor in the use of these drugs. Rayburg agreed, adding that any treatment program should include patient follow-up and medication reminders to ensure a high cure rate.

*The views expressed are those of the individual alone and not of Managed Health Care Associates, Inc.