ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) has released Moving Forward on a Solid Foundation: Year One Progress Report, which examines the success of the association's strategic initiative Pharmacists Advancing Medication Adherence (PAMA).
PAMA's goal is to facilitate the ability of independent community pharmacists to provide adherence services as a core competency of the profession, equivalent to the dispensing process, by 2015. The report, which covers July 2011 through July 2012, outlines the tangible and measurable steps that are currently underway in furtherance of that objective.
"NCPA is committed to advancing and improving patient medication adherence, which is why we launched this ambitious, comprehensive, and realistic five-year program to address this problem," said NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey, RPh, MBA. "As very accessible and highly trained medication experts that patients trust, independent community pharmacists are perfectly suited to help drive greater adherence. NCPA wants to help its members maximize their potential in this critical component of health care."
Hoey added, "During the past year, a strong foundation has been laid to achieve the PAMA vision. Our efforts are described in this progress report that focuses on pharmacy education, pharmacists and pharmacy operations, patient care services, and public policy. We are confident that, when the five-year program concludes, the disturbing number of $290 billion a year being wasted on the improper use of medication will begin to recede and momentum for further improvement will be clear."
As part of PAMA, NCPA has launched Simplify My Meds™, an innovative adherence program that allows pharmacists to coordinate patients' prescription refills on a single day of the month. This model facilitates a more comprehensive and coordinated level of pharmacy care, reduces the potential for gaps in therapy, and promotes improved medication adherence. Research has confirmed that refill coordination at a single pharmacy is recognized as an effective tactic to improve adherence, and to date, more than 26,000 patients are benefiting from this service at more than 700 community pharmacies nationwide. NCPA also launched www.stick2thescript.org, an online resource that provides pharmacists and other health care providers with a comprehensive set of tools, programs, and materials to use with patients to help them understand the goals and outcomes of their prescription regimen, manage their chronic conditions, and take their medications as directed.
PAMA programs specifically focus on:
- Providing tools for pharmacists to advance patient understanding of adherence behavior;
- Tracking pharmacist engagement and measuring patient understanding of the importance of their medication regimen;
- Promoting increased emphasis on integrating adherence practices into pharmacy education; and
- Communicating results and effectiveness to policy makers, health care media, other health care providers, health plans, patients and their caregivers.
NCPA recognizes that the success of PAMA also is dependent on the collaborative partnerships it can create with other organizations and stakeholders, as demonstrated by its partnership with the National Consumers League's Script Your Future campaign.
"The PAMA initiative not only will make a difference in the lives of patients and save our health care system wasted dollars, but it will hopefully cause America's health care system to better incorporate the wealth of expertise independent community pharmacists bring to the table," Hoey said.
PAMA is supported by unrestricted grants from Cardinal Health Foundation, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, and Pfizer.
The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA®) represents the interests of America's community pharmacists, including the owners of more than 23,000 independent community pharmacies. Together they represent an $88.5 billion health care marketplace, dispense nearly 40% of all retail prescriptions, and employ more than 300,000 individuals, including over 62,000 pharmacists. To learn more go to www.ncpanet.org or read NCPA's blog, The Dose, at http://ncpanet.wordpress.com/.
SOURCE National Community Pharmacists Association