Volume 03, Number 1, 2012

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    Development of a Risk Assessment Tool for Falls Prevention in Hospital Inpatients Based on the Medication Appropriateness Index (MAI) and Modified Beer’s Criteria
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Rumore, Martha M.; Vaidean, Georgeta
    Medication review is an essential component of comprehensive falls assessment. A medication review by pharmacists can assist to identify and notify prescribers of medications that require adjustment or discontinuation. Beers Criteria and the Medication Assessment Index (MAI) are explicit and implicit inappropriate prescribing (IP) tools, respectively. While the Beers Criteria has been applied to falls prevention, the MAI has not. Developing alternative falls prevention tools has been spurned by both the desire to overcome limitations of the Beers Criteria, coupled with the need for implicit criteria which includes consideration for patient –specific clinical judgement. A literature search and review of the Beers Criteria and MAI tools revealed advantages and disadvantages of each. Using combined explicit/implicit falls assessment criteria using both the Beers Criteria and MAI as a framework, a falls specific inappropriate prescribing (FASPIP) tool for use in elderly hospitalized patients was developed. Validation of the FASPIP in the clinical setting is needed.
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    Primary Care Providers’ experiences with Pharmaceutical Care-based Medication Therapy Management Services
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Maracle, Heather L.; Oliveira, Djenane Ramalho de; Brummel, Amanda
    This study explored primary care providers’ (PCPs) experiences with the practice of pharmaceutical care-based medication therapy management (MTM). Qualitative, semi-structured interviews were conducted with six PCPs who have experiences working with MTM pharmacists for at least three years. The first author conducted the interviews that were audio-taped, transcribed, and coded independently. The codes were then harmonized via discussion and consensus with the other authors. Data were analyzed for themes using the hermeneutic-phenomenological method as proposed by Max van Manen. Three men and three women were interviewed. On average, the interviewees have worked with MTM pharmacists for seven years. The six (6) themes uncovered from the interviews included: (1) “MTM is just part of our team approach to the practice of medicine”: MTM as an integral part of PCPs’ practices; (2) “Frankly it’s education for the patient but it’s also education for me”: MTM services as a source of education; (3) “It’s not exactly just the pharmacist that passes out the medicines at the pharmacy”: The MTM practitioner is different from the dispensing pharmacist; (4) “So, less reactive, cleaning up the mess, and more proactive and catching things before they become so involved”: MTM services as preventative health care efforts; (5)“I think that time is the big thing”: MTM pharmacists spend more time with patients; (6) “There’s an access piece, there’s an availability piece, there’s a finance piece”: MTM services are underutilized at the clinics. In conclusion, PCPs value having MTM pharmacists as part of their team in ambulatory clinics. MTM pharmacists are considered an important source of education to patients as well as to providers as they are seen as having a unique body of knowledge –medication expertise. All PCPs highly treasure the time and education provided by the MTM pharmacists, their ability to manage and adjust patients’ medications, and their capability to address patients’ medication experiences. MTM pharmacists are seen as being different from dispensing pharmacists, and PCPs usually highlight that difference to patients as they refer them to MTM services. Lastly, it is apparent that MTM pharmacists struggle to explain what their role is within the healthcare team and they need to find a more effective way to explain the unique value they add to the care of patients.
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    Evaluation of Patient Assistance Program Eligibility and Availability for Top 200 Brand Name and Generic Drugs in the United States
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Chu, Chin-Fun; Lal, Lincy S; Felder, Tisha M; Rosenau, Pauline
    One strategy to encourage uninsured and underinsured patients’ compliance with medication regimen is to refer them to pharmaceutical industry–sponsored patient assistance programs (PAPs). In order to receive the requested medications, patients should be qualified based on the program eligibility requirements. The purpose of this study was to examine PAP eligibility criteria for the most commonly dispensed prescriptions in the United States. We identified 136 unique chemical entities in the Top 200 drug list and 111 (82%) of these pharmaceutical products were offered by PAPs. Among the available medications, 69 (62%) were brand name; 29 (26%) were generic, and 13 (12%) had both brand name/generic forms. In terms of the availability of types of drugs (brand name vs. generic) provided by PAPs, differences in PAP eligibility requirements were found for citizenship (p < 0.001), permanent residency (p < 0.001), and prescription drug coverage (p< 0.001), but not for income limits (p= 0.051). Overall, PAPs could help low-income patients to obtain necessary medications; however, U.S. citizenship/permanent residency and restriction on prescription coverage are more likely to be required for brand name drugs rather than for generics. PAPs also provide some options for the underinsured and those with private insurance or Medicare Part D plan that offers inadequate prescription coverage.
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    Excluding Orphan Drugs from the 340B Drug Discount Program: the Impact on 18 Critical Access Hospitals
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Wallack, Madeline Carpinelli; Sorensen, Todd
    Purpose: The 340B Drug Pricing Program is a federal program designed to reduce the amount that safety net providers spend on outpatient drugs. The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act of 2010 extended eligibility for 340B to critical access hospitals (CAHs) for all drugs except those designated as “orphan.” Because this policy is unprecedented, this study quantifies the gross financial impact that this exemption has on a group of CAHs. Methods: Drug spending for 2010 from 18 CAHs in Minnesota and Wisconsin are reviewed to identify the prevalence of orphan drug purchases and to calculate the price differentials between the 340B price and the hospitals’ current cost. Results: The 18 CAHs’ purchases of orphan drugs comprise an average of 44% of the total annual drug budgets, but only 5% of units purchased, thus representing a very high proportion of their expenditures. In the aggregate, the 18 hospitals would have saved $3.1 million ($171,000 average per hospital) had purchases of drugs with orphan designations been made at the 340B price. Because CAH claims for Medicare are reimbursed on a cost-basis, the Federal government is losing an opportunity for savings. Conclusion: The high prevalence of orphan drug use and considerable potential for cost reduction through the 340B program demonstrate the loss of benefit to the hospitals, Federal government and the states.
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    What We Can Expect from Consumer-Driven Health Care
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Park, Taehwan
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    Unit-of-Use Versus Traditional Bulk Packaging
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) So, Tiffany; Wertheimer, Albert
    Background: The choice between unit-of-use versus traditional bulk packaging in the US has long been a continuous debate for drug manufacturers and pharmacies in order to have the most efficient and safest practices. Understanding the benefits of using unit-of-use packaging over bulk packaging by US drug manufacturers in terms of workflow efficiency, economical costs and medication safety in the pharmacy is sometimes challenging. Methods: A time-saving study comparing the time saved using unit-of-use packaging versus bulk packaging, was examined. Prices between unit-of-use versus bulk packages were compared by using the Red Book: Pharmacy’s Fundamental Reference. Other articles were reviewed on the topics of counterfeiting, safe labeling, and implementation of unit-of-use packaging. Lastly, a cost-saving study was reviewed showing how medication adherence, due to improved packaging, could be cost-effective for patients. Results: When examining time, costs, medication adherence, and counterfeiting arguments, unit-of-use packaging proved to be beneficial for patients in all these terms.
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    Remember Your MEDS: Medication Education Delivers Success
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Rife, Kelsey M.; Ginty, Sarah E.; Hohner, Elizabeth M.; Stamper, Heather R.; Sobota, Kristen F.; Bright, David R.
    Background: Medication adherence is one of the largest barriers to better patient outcomes today. As pharmacists and student pharmacists expand their roles with community outreach projects, they have the potential to make a huge impact on improving adherence. Objective: To improve medication adherence through patient counseling and constructive resources, and to determine patient preferences of adherence tools. Methods: Student pharmacists partnered with a 340B pharmacy to promote the importance of medication adherence. Patients were counseled in an initial 10 minute session, and then given the opportunity to receive one or more of the following adherence tools: a pill box, timer, reminder refrigerator magnets, calendar stickers, refill reminder phone calls and/or text message reminders. A pre-survey was conducted to establish the patients’ baseline medication adherence using the validated ©Morisky Medication Adherence Scale (©MMAS-8). After three months, students conducted the post-survey via the ©MMAS-8 by calling the patients and asking them questions about the helpfulness of the adherence tools as well as the effectiveness of the initial counseling visit. Results: Sixty five patients with hypertension enrolled in the study, and 51 patients completed both the pre- and post-surveys. Patients improved from a 6.02 (SD +/- 1.62) average pre-score to a 6.83 (SD +/-1.25) average post score (p < 0.001). Pill boxes, text message reminders, and calendar stickers were respectively ranked as the top 3 most helpful tools studied. The refrigerator magnets were also considered helpful by most patients who used them. The timers were ranked the least helpful, mostly due to difficulty of use. Conclusion: Student pharmacists can have a positive impact on medication adherence through simple counseling and offering effective adherence tools.
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    Evaluation of a Consumer-Generated Marketing Plan for Medication Therapy Management Services
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Isetts, Brian J.; Schommer, Jon C.; Westberg, Sarah M.; Johnson, Julie K.; Froiland, Nickie; Hedlund, Julie M.
    The purpose of this project was to utilize a consumer-directed, care model redesign methodology to develop and evaluate a marketing plan for medication therapy management services (MTMS) provided in community pharmacies. This was accomplished through a six-step process: (1) application of “design thinking” for eliciting consumer input on redesigning MTMS and marketing approaches, (2) exploratory research, (3) focus group analysis, (4) marketing plan development, (5) marketing plan implementation, and (6) marketing plan evaluation. The findings showed that the application of “design thinking” and focus group analysis was useful for creating a consumer-directed marketing plan for medication therapy management services (MTMS). Implementation and evaluation of the MTMS Marketing Plan revealed that the most successful pharmacies were those that had established business associate agreements with the medical clinics closest to their site of practice, including access to electronic health records. This “virtual electronic presence” of pharmacists in the medical care system was highly consistent with the consumer demand we uncovered for a visible relationship between pharmacists, physicians and other health care providers.
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    Assessment of patient perceptions concerning a community pharmacy-based warfarin monitoring service
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Waitzman, Jennifer; Hiller, Debbie Pruss; Marciniak, Macary Weck; Ferreri, Stefanie
    Objective: To assess patient perceptions of a North Carolina community pharmacy-based warfarin monitoring service. Methods: Prospective study of patients 18 years of age and older, who filled a prescription for warfarin, in one of five Raleigh area community pharmacies, between May 1, 2010 and October 31, 2010. A 14 item survey, along with a self-addressed stamped envelope, was mailed to 330 identified patients. The survey inquired about details of current anticoagulation monitoring services, interest in utilizing a local community pharmacy for this service, and confidence in a pharmacist-managed program. Results: 26% of surveys were returned. 48% of surveyed individuals responded that they would be interested in having their warfarin monitoring performed by a trained pharmacist in a community pharmacy setting. Conclusion: Many participants responded that the community pharmacy would be more convenient than or as convenient as their current location. This may be a new clinical service that could be offered in certain community pharmacies.
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    Development and Implementation of a Novel Lifestyle Medicine Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience Elective
    (University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy, 2012) Gillespie, Nicole D.; Lenz, Thomas L.
    Objective: To develop and implement an Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) to increase student’s awareness and use of lifestyle modifications in chronic disease prevention and management. Design: A five-week APPE was developed that utilized a wide variety of activities, including direct patient care, patient education, case studies, journal clubs and reflective assessment and writing to explore various lifestyle modifications and their relation to chronic disease prevention and management. Conclusion: The novel lifestyle medicine APPE provides students a unique opportunity to advance their knowledge in therapeutic lifestyle changes and expand their understanding of the pharmacist’s role in chronic disease prevention and management.