The Importance of Specialty Pharmacy Accreditation

Accreditation provides value for specialty pharmacy patients and stakeholders.

Accreditation is a way for specialty pharmacies to easily show stakeholders that they consistently meet high standards that allow patients to receive the ideal treatments.

The goal of the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation is to increase public health by improving the level of patient care services through high accreditation standards.

Accreditation facilitates high quality of all services provided to patients, as well as safe and effective dispensing services, according to the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation’s session presented at the 7th Annual Specialty Product Distribution and Channel Optimization conference that was held on October 26 and 27.

It also requires specialty pharmacies to harness patient data to improve care, medication, and care delivery. Accreditation is a way for pharmacies to gain recognition for their adherence to standards set by different agencies.

The Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation compiles different standards that are comprehensive and practical, and can be used for different models of care.

The uptake of accreditation is becoming more popular among specialty pharmacies, as more insurers are requiring them to be accredited. Delivering more comprehensive care, patients are less likely to incur other costs, such as avoidable hospitalizations from adverse events caused by dosing errors or other errors.

The health care industry is also moving away from fee-for-service models in favor of a value-based system, with some agencies like Medicare basing reimbursement on the quality of services received. It is important that specialty pharmacies align themselves with this model to ensure they remain in preferred pharmacy networks.

Consistent services and improvement in patient outcomes are 2 significant components of accreditation standards, according to the session. Without these aspects, specialty pharmacies would not be able to prove their value to stakeholders and patients alike.

A beneficial accreditation program should improve the services, stress innovation, demonstrate accountability, and most importantly, create value, according to the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation.

For this particular accreditation, the specialty pharmacies will be visited without warning to assess the various aspects of the pharmacy. However, the surveyor will be sensitive to different business needs, and will avoid busy times, according to the session.

Specialty pharmacies that seek this accreditation will receive a report that outlines best practices, recommendations, and areas of non-compliance with standards, and are expected to create an action plan to fix any non-compliant areas.

If the Accreditation Process Oversight Committee deems the pharmacy to meet the standards, the pharmacy will be notified that it has received the accreditation.

Stringent accreditation processes can improve patient outcomes by increasing education regarding their treatment. Patients will know the duration of treatment, expected outcomes, how to manage adverse events, time until improvement, and the role of adherence, according to the presentation.

These pharmacies also will have reporting on prescription error rates, pharmacist interventions, patient satisfaction, and more. This data can be used to improve services and create new ways to offer patient benefits.

Improving patient health and outcomes while preventing unnecessary costs is the focus of many healthcare initiatives, and are the main goals of all accreditation programs. Specialty pharmacies who meet these standards and receive accreditation align themselves with the goals of the healthcare system, which is largely becoming value-based.