Synchronization Offers Patient Solutions
In 1985, former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, MD, stated, “Drugs don’t work in patients who don’t take them.” In-fact, poor medication adherence results in 33% to 69% of all medication-related hospitalizations and has been associated with disease progression, death, and increased health care costs.
In recent years, Medicare has recognized the impact of non-adherence and in response, created adherence quality measures to monitor medication adherence. Medicare and other commercial insurances recognize that medication adherence reduces medical costs and yields a net economic return despite increases in drug spending attributed to improved adherence.
Many pharmacies try to improve patient adherence by enrolling patients into “auto-fill” programs resulting in the pharmacy filling unneeded refills and the patient receiving repeated phone calls throughout the month.
Moundsville Pharmacy has taken a different approach – prescription synchronization. Jason Turner, pharmacist and owner of Moundsville Pharmacy explains, “Patients are looking for a simple and easy solution. Prescription synchronization allows for the patient to make one monthly visit to the pharmacy for their chronic therapy medications.”
In 2013, Moundsville Pharmacy introduced prescription synchronization to patients. The program is designed to align all of a patient’s maintenance (or chronic) medications to be due for refill on the same day each month. Each month the patient receives a single phone call from a pharmacist to review the patient’s medications and changes in medication therapy.
“As a pharmacy, we know it is important that every patient receives a personal call from their pharmacist each month. It allows the patient the opportunity to ask questions and the pharmacist the opportunity to thoroughly review the patient profile,” commented Adele Storm, pharmacist at Moundsville Pharmacy.
It was during the monthly review process that pharmacists Jason Turner and Katie Kacmarik recognized the opportunity to identify additional solutions for better health. In early 2014, the program was expanded to include a medication therapy management (MTM) component that allows pharmacists to identify even more opportunities to improve patient health. This enhancement created the PLUS portion of the program – now known as SyncRx+.
Kacmarik explains, “We initially detected opportunities for patients to be better immunized, but we soon realized that synchronization wasn’t just about people getting their medications monthly, but getting the right medications monthly. We were able to identify additional therapies to reduce a patient’s risks for complications and help them stay healthy.”
In March 2014, Turner presented the enhanced SyncRx+ program to Dan Benamoz, CEO of Pharmacy Development Services (PDS) and at the request of Benamoz, shared the program at the Annual PDS Business Growth Conference in March 2014.
Moundsville Pharmacy and Pharmacy Development Services worked together to develop training materials for pharmacists and have since trained pharmacies from Puerto Rico to Hawaii to use the SyncRx+ program. In addition, nearly a dozen pharmacy owners and their teams have traveled to Moundsville from as far away as North Carolina, New York, and eastern Pennsylvania to observe the processes and learn the SyncRx+ system so that they can provide a higher level of service to the patients in their community.
“To develop an idea like SyncRx+, which we knew would positively impact the lives of so many of our patients, has been a rewarding professional accomplishment – but knowing it has been adopted by other pharmacists and is now impacting patient lives beyond our pharmacy is simply overwhelming,” explained Turner.
Last month, Turner and Kacmarik were honored as the PDS 2015 Pharmacists of the Year for their contribution to the profession in developing (and training) the SyncRx+ program and the successes Moundsville Pharmacy has experienced in the construction of a new pharmacy facility and expansion to a second location in Sistersville, WV.
“Jason and Katie have both contributed to the independent pharmacy profession in many ways but especially with the program development and education they have shared with their peers about prescription synchronization,” said Sharon Rasnick, Vice President Service Delivery, Pharmacy Development Services.
“We are both very proud to be recognized, but the credit goes to the entire Moundsville Pharmacy team who trusted new ideas and worked to implement them into the pharmacy to make positive impacts on the health of our patients,” included Kacmarik.
Moundsville Pharmacy now has over 650 patients enrolled in their SyncRx+ synchronization program and 110 patients enrolled at its second location, Sistersville Pharmacy in Sistersville, WV. “Patients have really appreciated this program in Sistersville because it makes it easier for them to get their prescription refills without having to make multiple visits to the pharmacy,” said Brian Holmes, pharmacist at Sistersville Pharmacy.
In addition, both Moundsville Pharmacy and Sistersville Pharmacy have taken adherence one step further by offering home delivery to patients at no charge. Turner explains, “There are times when patients are unable to get to the pharmacy due to transportation, weather, mobility issues, or acute illness. We want to remove those barriers to ensure patients are taking their medications as prescribed.”
To learn more about the SyncRx+ prescription refill program and home or work delivery, call Moundsville Pharmacy at (304) 845-0390 or Sistersville Pharmacy at (304) 652-3711 or visit them online at MoundsvillePharmacy.com or SistersvillePharmacy.com
Pharmacy Development Services (PDS) founded by President and CEO, Dan Benamoz, R.Ph, in 1998, is the leading membership-based service provider of top-tier business education for independent pharmacy owners nationwide. Through personalized coaching, customized training and easy-to-implement programming, PDS provides its members with innovative and effective business solutions to help them achieve growth, sustainability and profitability.
In 1985, former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, MD, stated, “Drugs don’t work in patients who don’t take them.” In-fact, poor medication adherence results in 33% to 69% of all medication-related hospitalizations and has been associated with disease progression, death, and increased health care costs. In recent years, Medicare has recognized the impact of non-adherence…