Pharmacists can play key role in improving care transitions
Regarding the article “Care-transition program fumbles highlight CMS’ reform challenges” (Modern Healthcare, May 4, p. 17), I did not see any mention of using pharmacists in care transitions and reducing patient readmissions. A number of recent studies link outcomes and improved value to pharmacists, including reports from the National Governors Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Many states now allow a pharmacist to accept any delegated act by a physician, but unfortunately, we are not recognized as a healthcare provider. This could change through support of bipartisan legislation already introduced in Congress.
Community and hospital pharmacists are critical in this endeavor. We often interact with patients more frequently than physicians or nurses. We are highly educated medication experts and could refer patients for follow-up care to their physicians before they end up back in the hospital.
Mark Jacobs Vice president of operations PAAS National Stoughton, Wis.