Inside This Issue - News
Hagan praises retail Rx during visit to Kerr unit
August 30th, 2010
RALEIGH, N.C. – Pharmacists who play a central role in managing a person’s health can improve patient care and drive down costs, a U.S. senator said during a recent visit to a Kerr Drug store here.
Sen. Kay Hagan (D., N.C.), a cosponsor of the Medication Therapy Management Expanded Benefits Act of 2010 recently approved by the Senate, stressed that pharmacist intervention has been repeatedly proven to be a crucial part of patient care.
“The most effective and cost-efficient way to ensure seniors take their medication properly is through the counseling of a pharmacist,” Hagan said. “The evidence shows pharmacists can improve patient health and save health care dollars because pharmacists are often the most accessible health care provider for patients.”
Under the measure passed by the Senate, MTM coverage would be provided to any senior suffering from a chronic condition that accounts for high spending in the health care system. Similar legislation has been introduced in the House of Representatives.
During her visit to the Kerr store, Hagan met with patients and pharmacists and observed an MTM counseling session.
She later cited a recent analysis by the New England Healthcare Institute estimating the overall cost of medical complications created by patients not taking their medications properly at $290 billion per year.
Kerr executives said Hagan’s recognition of the impact that MTM can have on controlling health care costs and the Senate legislation give them hope that more insurers will cover consultations as health care reform moves forward.
“We know that for every $1 invested in MTM, overall health care costs are reduced by $8 or more, and Sen. Hagan understands that value,” Kerr chief executive officer Tony Civello said. “Pharmacy is evolving to a more patient-centered focus as patients and providers realize the value of pharmacy in improving health care.”