The Value of Pharmacists


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​The Value of Pharmacists in Patient Care in Healthcare Organizations

Levenia Baker, PharmD, MSc

​In the US, almost half a billion dollars is spent yearly on unnecessary interventions from the misuse of medications and complications associated with adverse reactions. In addition, medication adherence is one of the top barriers to successful treatment of chronic illnesses that involve long-term use of pharmacotherapy. In this and other disease management cases pharmacist can play a pivotal role in ensuring the success and health of a patient.

The ability of pharmacists to impact patients is unlimited. Pharmacists have the opportunity to help patients manage drug therapy to improve compliance issues, avoid preventable adverse events, reduce hospitalization/emergency room visits, and decrease health care cost in general. Pharmacists can also help to improve clinical outcomes and optimize medication use. Pharmacists are uniquely positioned to reach out to patients, identify gaps in care, and identify toxic effects or inadequate therapy early on in a therapy course.

Medication misuse, avoidable adverse events and medication compliance remain a costly burden for the American health care system. Through medication therapy management and the ability to reach out to patients and share valuable information to other providers, pharmacists will continue to be an invaluable resource to healthcare teams.