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PHARMACY

OmniSYS’ John King on making a difference with the pharmacy

BY John King
The pharmacy’s role in healthcare delivery continues to expand as the demand for cost-effective, convenient and accessible care continues to grow. A key aspect of this new role is the growth of pharmacy-based immunization delivery.
  
Although providing immunizations is still a relatively new service line for the pharmacy, it is one that has grown rapidly in just a few short years — influenza vaccinations administered at pharmacies increased by more than 500% over a six-year time period. However, over that same time period, overall adult immunization rates in the United States remained relatively stagnant. So while there has been a shift in the setting of vaccine administration, there is still a need to improve overall vaccination rates. How can the pharmacy capitalize on its new role as a convenient setting of care and improve overall immunization rates for key diseases such as pneumococcal disease?
 
The pharmacy has a number of advantages that make it the perfect setting to increase overall immunization rates and improve population health. Pharmacists are consistently voted one of the most trusted professions in America. The pharmacy also is convenient and accessible — 96% of Americans live within five miles of a community pharmacy, and most visit their local pharmacy on a regular basis. And with 25% of Americans now receiving an influenza vaccination at their local pharmacy, the pharmacist has been proven as a trusted provider of preventive care. 
 
Smart clinical messaging has emerged as a promising technology to facilitate the time-sensitive and accuracy-dependent process of determining vaccine eligibility in the pharmacy. Smart clinical messages are different from alerts being generated in the pharmacy today because they provide targeted information based on both clinical and business rules, as well as full integration with the pharmacy management system. The result is patient- and vaccine-specific alerts that manifest in the pharmacist’s existing workflow in real-time, allowing vaccination opportunities to be addressed at the point of service.
 
To prove the value of smart clinical messaging, a study was conducted from Nov. 1, 2016, to Jan. 31, 2017, at more than 5,600 pharmacies nationwide to measure the effectiveness of smart clinical messaging on vaccination rates for the two Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-recommended pneumococcal vaccines. The pharmacies in the study included a national retailer, a regional grocer and an assortment of mid-sized chains and independents. The results were positive in all pharmacy settings. When compared with pneumococcal immunization data from the prior year, pneumococcal conjugate vaccination rates increased by 64.3% and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccination rates increased by 31.6%. 
 
As consumers demand more convenient and accessible care, the role of the pharmacist will continue to grow in scope and importance. Pharmacists are transforming the perception of their role as a provider of preventative care by offering basic medical services to their customers — including immunizations. The pharmacy’s unique position in the care continuum, combined with its unique access to large numbers of patients, make it an ideal care setting for improving overall U.S. vaccination rates. By leveraging innovative technologies that help them efficiently and effectively engage with patients, pharmacists can make a measurable impact on both vaccination rates and overall population health.
 
To download the complete study, please visit omnisys.com/resources/immunization-pilot-results/.
 
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Medi-Dose/EPS rolls out Steri-Tamp Tamper-Clear Syringe Seal

BY Seth Mendelson

To complement its growing lines of IV and tamper-evident products, Medi-Dose/EPS is adding Steri-Tamp Tamper-Clear Syringe Seal to its lines of IV and tamper-evident products.  

Officials at the Ivyland, Pa.-based company say that the Tamper-Clear Syringe Seal provides a tamper-evident seal with clear visibility of syringe graduations. They say that it is easily applied over the syringe cap and maintains the integrity of the medication and packaging–even when refrigerated. Once removed, the seal cannot be reapplied and removing the syringe cap destroys the seal. 

Company executives add that the product is designed to withstand freezing temperatures down to -20 degrees centigrade and the product’s powerful adhesive seal has been shown to be more than three times stronger than others on the market. It provides a 100% sterile barrier. All Steri-Tamp products are packaged in a convenient USP 797 compliant dispenser.

“We’re always looking for ways to help pharmacists and nurses streamline their practices but maintain control and protection over the meds they dispense,” says Bob Braverman, director of marketing. “The new Tamper-Clear Syringe seal, as well as the rest of Steri-Tamp line of bag, vial and syringe seals, help practitioners accomplish this in a cost-effective manner. These products are an excellent addition to the fight against contamination, tampering and accidental double dosing.”

For more information on the EPS Steri-Tamp line of tamper-evident IV seals, visit MediDose.com, call 800-523-8966 or e-mail [email protected] 

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Michigan Pharmacists Association, MedCerts partner to certify pharmacy technicians

BY David Salazar

LIVONIA, Mich. — Online healthcare and IT certification training school MedCerts is partnering with the Michigan Pharmacists Association for an effort that it says will bring higher-level training to pharmacy technicians. The partnership will offer state associations across the United States discounted access to online training for members to achieve certification goals, MedCerts said.

“We are excited to partner with the MedCerts team,” Michigan Pharmacists Association COO Dianne Malburg said.  “Since 2009, MedCerts has had a strong track record of developing and delivering best-in-class training programs. This was reinforced in July when MedCerts earned nationally-recognized accreditation from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists /Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education for their Pharmacy Technician program. Our partnership will bring an innovative approach to technician training, and add significant value to other state associations.”

The partnership will bring discounts for the ASHP/ACPE accredited Pharmacy Technician Professional program and the Certified Pharmacy Technician program to state pharmacy associations around the country, the companies said. MedCerts said the goal is to increase the number of certified pharmacy technicians in the United States.

“We are very proud of our success in improving training initiatives in the Pharmacy industry,” MedCerts director of corporate development Domenic Policicchio said. “Our goal is simple: we want to broaden accessibility to technician training (ASHP/ACPE) and certify more technicians. This partnership brings an enormous amount of support and industry knowledge, with goals that align seamlessly. We are honored to be partnering with one of the most influential Associations in the country.”

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