What Makes a Great Pharmacy Partner?
There are numerous factors that contribute to making a pharmacy an excellent partner. One of the most important factors is developing a diligent, compassionate, and competent staff. A staff with these qualities can offer consultations in medication and proper administration which work towards solutions with chronic health issues. These solutions can help to provide affordable alternatives to generic brands and other options available. Additionally, a great pharmacy offers both education and access regarding convenient vaccinations. These pharmacies will also provide assistance in understanding and choosing pill dispensers and bottles, with several options related to easy-to-open containers and special packaging. On top of all that, having the desire to improve the health of the population while decreasing costs with added values like providing access to various levels on a drug formulary is characteristic of a beneficial pharmacy.
Because various conditions affect patients between doctor visits, pharmacy companies play a critical role in the healthcare industry. Most patients with chronic illnesses visit their primary physicians only a handful of times per year but will visit their pharmacy multiple times a month. With these frequent visitations, pharmacies are in a unique position to impact healthcare. Medication non-adherence is an annual issue in the healthcare industry. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, almost 50% of patients do not take medications as prescribed, which results in costs of $289 billion annually. The pharmacy profession is contributing a significant portion of the innovation in adherence efforts to bring an overall health increase to patients. Through the development of new initiatives and new tools, such as patient assessment tools, these efforts from pharmacies, such as Mac’s Long-Term Care Pharmacy Solutions, are having a positive impact.
A pharmacy that partakes in the efforts of advocating adherence creates an essential partner. Other efforts towards diminishing non-adherence are achieved through patient education; providing patients with educational materials can, in turn, increase medication refills. Pharmacy-based counseling, which helps patients to understand their overall health and take steps in their health development, is another important effort in supporting medication adherence and patient health. These efforts can include motivational interviewing, “directive, patient-centered counseling designed to motivate patients for change by helping them recognize and resolve the discrepancy between their behavior, personal goals, and values.”1 Motivational interviewing helps in adherence efforts and has been proven successful with increased medication refills amongst patients.
Another aspect of a great pharmacy partner is the outcome of essential information flow. Physicians need critical data like drug regimens, medication acquiring data, prescription and medication history, electronic health records, and clinical support systems. Certain pharmacological documents such as these can be pertinent to partners and various stakeholders. Timely and accurate information can be critical for the health of a patient. As data is passed between the patient, adherence programs, physicians and data sources (such as a pharmacy), pharmacies that work to implement standard practices and define various capabilities help to overcome issues that can arise. Great pharmacies understand these partnerships and that the clear understanding of information work in conjunction with technological reminders and monitoring to transmit said data. By creating a better flow of information, patients are provided with more opportunities to understand and gain access to professional help. When it comes to national health care efforts, the key factor is data.
Mac’s Long-Term Care Solutions is much more than a vendor for pharmaceuticals; they incorporate advanced technologies to guarantee top-notch customer service and long-term technology solutions with an emphasis on developing personal relationships to meet specific needs. They understand that a great pharmacy partnership leads to better overall population health and a high success rate when it comes to achieving partner goals. Mac’s LTC, a locally owned business, documents, measures, and provides education to patients and partners. This kind of superior service, focused on senior living communities, strengthens the physical health of patients and ultimately the overall community.
To learn more about developing a potential partnership with Mac’s LTC Pharmacy Solutions, click here.
1. Rollnick S, Miller W. What is Motivational Interviewing? Behav Cogn Psychter 1995; 23:325-224.)