Sheena Babin, PharmD, business development and clinical pharmacy manager at Ochsner Health System, discusses changes specialty pharmacists will need to make to ensure adherence of self-administered specialty drugs.
Babin: Adherence is something that specialty pharmacists are always monitoring, it’s something that’s always in our forefront that we know is very important to the patient. If the patient is not adherent the medication really can’t work for the patient, so that is something that is evaluated constantly. I think the challenge will be with these unique regimens that are in the works and coming out. That will be something that we will maybe need to work with technology to see what we can do to really help patients remember to take their medications as their prescribed.
And then also, I think we’re utilizing other tools currently in the adherence field to really assess the patients individually
so individual assessments of patients and determining where their adherence problems come in. Is it not understanding? Because we have tools that we can help the patients understand how to take their medications. We have mechanisms to alter the prescribed regimen—–sometimes, not always––but sometimes we do have ways to alter the regimen for the patient to fit their lifestyles needs, and those are some things that we take advantage of currently. But as the medications tend to become a little bit more unique in the dosage form and the delivery systems, and the prescribed regimens, that creates a little bit of a challenge for us to find a way for us to talk to our patients.