AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange Highlights Medication Therapy Management
The latest issue of the AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange is the last in a series of three issues focused on the Innovations Exchange’s new initiative to expand scale up and spread efforts through learning communities. The featured innovations describe three programs that used pharmacists in various ways to provide medication therapy management services to patients in different settings. One of the featured profiles describes an innovation being adapted and implemented by participants of the Medication Therapy Management Learning Community. The featured QualityTools include a resource guide for payers, plans and providers about integrating comprehensive medication management services into patient-centered care, and a medication reconciliation toolkit for health care facilities. Along withmedication therapy management, the Innovations Exchange’s learning community initiative includes information about emergency services and patient- and family-centered care.
Innovations in Medication Therapy Management
Medication therapy management (MTM) generally refers to a range of services and activities which assist patients in taking their medications appropriately. The American Pharmacists Association defines MTM as “a service or group of services that optimize therapeutic outcomes for individual patients. Medication therapy management services include medication therapy reviews, pharmacotherapy consults, anticoagulation management, immunizations, health and wellness programs, and many other clinical services. Pharmacists provide medication therapy management to help patients get the best benefits from their medications by actively managing drug therapy and by identifying, preventing, and resolving medication-related problems.”
Pharmacists provide MTM services in various settings including hospitals, ambulatory health centers, and community pharmacies. According to a recent AHRQ report titled Medication Therapy Management Interventions in Outpatient Settings, there is evidence that MTM programs can reduce the risk of adverse drug events if pharmacists have access to brief clinical summaries from patient medical records. Having access to patient health information is important for pharmacists to address complex medication therapy regimen issues, medication interactions, and under- or over-dosing issues.
The AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange has identified promoting medication therapy management for at-risk populations as a high-priority area. The Innovations Exchange’s new Medication Therapy Management Learning Community specifically explores the role of pharmacists within interprofessional primary care teams in Federally Qualified Heath Centers (FQHCs), which typically serve at-risk patients with one or more chronic conditions.
The work of the MTM Learning Community builds upon the MyRx innovation, one of the profiles featured in this issue. Please visit the MTM LC page for more information.
- Culturally Tailored Pharmacist Home Visits and Educator-Led Group Sessions Increase Medication Adherence and Reduce Blood Pressure for Seniors with Hypertension and Diabetes
- Clinical Pharmacists Provide Outpatient Medication Management to Patients With Severe Diabetes and Those on Anticoagulants, Leading to Improved Outcomes and Lower Costs
- Pharmacists Monitor Hypertensive Patients and Make Recommendations to Physicians, Leading to Better Blood Pressure Control and Increased Physician Adherence to Established Guidelines
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