Optimizing Medication Therapy & Improving Outcomes

October 30, 2015

MTM Challenges in Patients With Diabetes: A Systematic Review 

Providing MTM for patients with diabetes presents many challenges. Adherence problems include drug regimen, system, and patient-related barriers. Diabetes therapy should always incorporate components of behavior change. Therefore, a variety of counseling topics are needed in order to achieve optimal outcome goals. At a minimum, counseling sessions should include the following subjects: goals of therapy, drug regimen concerns, diet, and exercise. Motivational interviewing can serve as a valuable tool for achieving behavior changes. To obtain reimbursement for their services, pharmacists could complete a credentialing program and set up MTM services. Read more.

The Affordable Care Act and the Pharmacist

Historically, millions of Americans have been uninsured or underinsured owing to the disjointed nature of the U.S. healthcare system. Sweeping changes to the healthcare system are being made by the Affordable Care Act, which was signed into law in 2010. Although U.S. healthcare spending far exceeds that of any other country, the United States has poorer health outcomes with respect to preventable disease. It is speculated that the Affordable Care Act will benefit the U.S. population in many ways. It is to be hoped that this act will be a source of expanded future opportunities for pharmacists to improve patient outcomes through provision of comprehensive services, such as MTM. Read more.

Antibiotic Therapy: Adverse Effects and Dosing Considerations

An age-related decline in the immune system, in conjunction with comorbidities and other factors, increases susceptibility to infection; age-related physiological changes predispose seniors to the risk of antibiotic-related adverse reactions as well. Considering evidence-based data, in conjunction with clinical experience and judgment, is an important aspect of individualizing antibiotic regimens for seniors. With anticipation and prevention of antibiotic-associated adverse reactions, positive therapeutic outcomes in addition to positive pharmacoeconomic and health-related quality-of-life outcomes may be achieved. Read more.

Medication Therapy Management in the News

ADHD Drugs Appear Safe in Pediatric Congenital Heart Patients

Pediatric congenital heart disease patients don’t need to avoid taking stimulants to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a new study. Read more.

COPD Patients Might Be Prescribed Too Many Opioids

A new study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology suggests that might be the case and sounds an alarm about overuse of the pain medications in chronic lung disease patients. Read more

Early Corticosteroids Appear to Stunt Growth in Asthma Patients

Prescribing asthma medications to children younger than age 2 years can stunt their lifetime growth, according to research presented at the 54th Annual European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology Meeting. Read more.

Two-Drug Combination Helps Relieve Depression in Older Patients

A new study published online by The Lancet finds that patients older than age 60 years can be successfully treated by adding a second drug—an antipsychotic medication. Read more.