WASHINGTON, DC – The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) released the 2016 edition of the APhA Pharmacists’ Patient Care Services Digest (Digest). The publication shows the continued growth of pharmacists’ patient care services and highlights the expanded roles pharmacists have in the health care system.
The Digest identifies emerging and distinct pathways for providing patient care services, including a community-based pathway and an integrated health organization pathway, and explores opportunities, needed infrastructures, and challenges associated with implementation.
Commonly reported patient care roles of pharmacists in community settings include, assisting patients in managing self-care behaviors (over-the-counter medications and nutritional supplements), improving continuity of care across providers and settings, and improving outcomes of prescribed treatments for chronic care.
In integrated health organization settings, pharmacists’ roles include coordinating medication use in acute care, disease management, and targeted outcome situations; helping to optimize resources; providing unique expertise in team-based care; and facilitating continuous quality improvement efforts for organizations.
Formerly known as the APhA Medication Therapy Management Digest, the scope of the publication was expanded in 2014 to better reflect the enhanced roles pharmacists are playing in providing patient care services. According to the 2015 survey, pharmacists are increasingly providing medication management, disease state management and education, health and wellness services, and care transitions services.
Overall, findings from the survey indicate that: there is a continued expansion of pharmacist-provided patient care; confidence in pharmacists as care providers continues to grow; pharmacists are reducing gaps in care and improving performance for health plans; and work systems and processes are being aligned with desired outcomes of care.
The APhA Pharmacists’ Patient Care Services Digest – Building Momentum. Increasing Access. – is available, free of charge, at http://media.pharmacist.com/documents/APhA_Digest.pdf.