From the time they wake up in the morning, people with acute and chronic health conditions have to be fully aware of their situation. They take stock of how they’re feeling, assess whether their physical ailments and limitations have gotten better or worse, and learn to recognize when they need to reach out for help.
Because their illnesses and the routines they require can be complex, patients often make mistakes when taking their medications. Each year in the United States 1.5 million preventable medical events happen because of mismanaged medications, costing billions of dollars for patients, providers, employers and the government.
To ensure that patients take their medications on time and get the best care possible, specialty pharmacies offer medication therapy management for people with a variety of specialized health conditions.
How medication therapy management works
Medication therapy management is a service that pharmacies offer to individuals who take medicine and supplements on a frequent basis.
When patients choose a pharmacy, they have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with a pharmacist who can help them manage their medications and find out the most cost-effective ways for them to be treated. The pharmacist also communicates with the patient’s doctors to ensure that everybody is on the same page.
Often, people feel too embarrassed, intimidated, or ashamed to ask their doctors questions about their conditions and medications. Pharmacists involved in medication therapy management are aware of this common occurrence and attempt to create environments where the patient is comfortable with being open and asking questions.
Patients can find out what drugs are best for them, how different drugs mix with one another, and what to do if certain drugs aren’t working. Since so many prescription and over-the-counter medications are available, it’s important that patients receive the correct information for their unique situations.
Pharmacists will make sure that patients are taking the right dosages of their medications at the correct times, and that they are satisfied with those medications.
Impacts of medication therapy management
When people sign up for medication therapy management, they are taking a step that may not only save their lives, but will also have a chain reaction on the health care system as a whole. If patients are well informed about their medications, there is less of a chance of accidental death or injury occurring.
Medication therapy management decreases the amount of insurance claims filed to the government and private companies, thus keeping premiums low. It also reduces the number of people admitted to the hospital, and saves money on both a micro and macro level. If patients aren’t spending money on injuries caused by medications, they’re able to spend it outside the health care system.
Supervising medicinal intake is an arduous task for patients. But with the help of a pharmacist and medication therapy management, they can receive the care they deserve.