You see a pharmacist almost as much as you see a doctor, especially when your doctor prescribes you a medication for you, your spouse, or your children. But do you ever get as much face-time with your pharmacist as you do with your doctor? For most of us, the answer is simply no.
This is mainly because pharmacy statutes in most states have created boundaries that pharmacists can't cross. For example, pharmacists might be sequestered to only handle drug therapy and dosage: though they might administer immunizations, their patient interaction is limited by state statutes and pharmacists are not allowed to see medical histories to order test results for patients with chronic pain.
But pharmacists are actually trained to provide more than just drug therapy treatment.
After years of schooling and licensure exams, pharmacy education covers preventative and wellness treatment, know how to manage chronic diseases like diabetes or high blood pressure. And with their numbers growing while Primary Care Providers shrink, pharmacists might actually be able to close the gap in primary care and spend more time helping patients understand their treatment that their physician provides.
While pharmacists today can provide that kind of care, we would need to give them the time, space, and money for it. For one, many pharmacists are paid just by the number of prescriptions they fill, therefore limiting their paid interaction with patients. In addition, 70% of a pharmacist's time is spent completing tasks a technician can do. Freeing up a pharmacist's time can do a lot in terms of patient care.
With an overhaul of how our healthcare system to include pharmacists more, we could see a lot more care and attention paid to patients. To learn more about pharmacy and stay up-to-date on changes in the industry, contact us.
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