Happy National Pharmacists Month! The goal of this month is to recognize pharmacists for the significant role they play in effective medication management, patient education and overall medication safety. Learn more about how pharmacists can help you every day.
Safe and Effective Medication Use
Pharmacists help ensure that medications control conditions the right way. They help minimize any side effects and safeguard against any possible interactions with other medications that lead to more expensive health care costs such as emergency room visits, hospitalization, etc.
Did you know that more than 300,000 immunization-trained pharmacists administer vaccines, and nearly one in four adults receive their influenza vaccinations at their community pharmacy?1 Pharmacists can provide guidance on all vaccine-preventable diseases and which immunizations are best for you.
OTCs and Supplements
Pharmacists are experts in prescription medications, supplements and over the counter medications. They can tell you about potential interactions with foods, other drugs, or dietary supplements. And they can help you pick the perfect product. With over 100,000 over-the-counter products on the market, your pharmacist is always there to lend a helping hand!1
Did you know that pharmacists are experts and more than just medications? They are trained and educated in how to manage conditions as a whole. Tria Health has pharmacists who are certified diabetic educators on staff. This allows them to treat the person rather than the medication. They focus on non-pharmacy and pharmacy strategies to accomplish control of a disease.
Tria Health’s Pharmacists
Tria Health was founded on the belief that pharmacists play a vital role in the management of high-risk patients that drive the majority of health care spend. If Tria Health is currently a part of your healthcare plan, call the Tria Health Help desk today for any of your medication-related questions.
Many prescription pain medications are combination products that contain varying amounts of Tylenol, or acetaminophen. In the past, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not placed limits on the amount of Tylenol that is included in these combo products. That is changing as the FDA is asking manufacturers of these medications to limit the amount of Tylenol per pill to 325mg.
Excessive amounts of Tylenol can lead to serious liver damage. If you are taking a prescription pain medication that contains Tylenol, it is important to avoid the use of over the counter products that contain acetaminophen (the same active ingredient as Tylenol). Acetaminophen is available in a variety of over the counter remedies, including numerous cough and cold products.
Look and Ask! Look at the active ingredient listing on all over the counter products and ask your pharmacist if you have any questions.
How many times have you left your physician’s office with a prescription that you never filled? Or stopped taking a prescribed medication because of side effects or high cost?
In some cases, not taking your medications as prescribed, referred to as non-adherence, may only cause minor health-related issues. However, when patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart failure, high cholesterol and high blood pressure are non-adherent, they are putting their health at serious catastrophic risk.
Quick Glance at the Non-Adherence (Medication Mismanagement) Numbers:
– 3.9 billion prescriptions were written in 2010
– On average, 50% of patients don’t take their medications as prescribed
– Non-adherence costs the U.S. an estimated $317 billion annually
– $106 billion of that total estimated cost accounts for non-adherence to medications for diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure/heart disease
The average Tria Health patient sees four physicians and takes eight medications. As the number of medications increase, so does the level of patient-responsibility for daily management and understanding the purpose for each one. A major component of medication management includes patient communication with physicians about their drug regimen to prevent the risk of over-prescribing or taking medications that don’t interact well with one another.
What’s the solution?
Medication Therapy Management (MTM) is an innovative practice in which a pharmacist takes responsibility to optimize a patient’s medication regimen by ensuring medications are safe, appropriate and effective. Tria Health specializes in providing MTM services and partners with plan sponsors to help reduce over health care costs for them and their plan members. An MTM-focused pharmacist is able to work one-on-one with the patient and their physicians in order to ensure a complete circle of care.
For more information about Tria Health visit www.triahealth.com or call 1.888.799.TRIA (8742).