WASHINGTON Moving to practice what it preaches, the American Pharmacists Association said Monday it would begin offering medication therapy management services to APhA employees who are enrolled in the Kaiser Permanente health plan.
The new benefit will come through a collaborative pilot project between APhA and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States. The pilot will include what the pharmacy organization describes as “a broad range of healthcare services designed to help patients receive the best benefits from their medications by identifying, preventing and resolving medication-related problems.” The MTM service, added APhA, will “enhance and coordinate patient care by improving collaboration among pharmacists, physicians and other healthcare professionals; enhancing communication between patients and their healthcare teams; and empowering patients to optimize medication use.”
Under the Kaiser-APhA MTM program, APhA employees and covered dependents over the age of 18 are eligible to participate. Employees may request an annual comprehensive medication checkup at any of the participating Kaiser Permanente Medical Center Pharmacies in Virginia, Maryland or the District of Columbia. “During this process, the Kaiser Permanente clinical pharmacists will review medications and pertinent medical information, and provide services aligned with current practice guidelines and models that APhA has developed,” noted Sharon Corbitt, a spokesperson for the 158-year-old national pharmacists’ organization.
The launch of the MTM program will bring to APhA employees “the pharmacist services that we have been advocating for all patients in the nation’s health care system,” said organization EVP and CEO Tom Menighan.
Cynthia Adams, director of pharmacy operations and clinical services for Kaiser Mid-Atlantic, said the managed care giant “recognizes the value pharmacists provide as integral health care team members in improving healthcare outcomes.
“Our coordinated healthcare model enables collaboration and communication between the pharmacist and other heathcare professionals,” Adams said. “Additionally, documentation in our electronic medical record, Kaiser Permanente HealthConnect, ensures that a medication history is recorded and available to Kaiser Permanente health professionals involved in treatment.”
Kaiser has provided MTM services to its Medicare Part D members since 2006, she added.