Phar­ma­cists can play key role in im­prov­ing care tran­si­tions

Modern Healthcare - - COMMENT -

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.

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