American Pharmacy Purchasing Alliance (APPA) now offers Specialty accreditation assistance for its members.
Members of APPA can now apply for and obtain special accreditation.
With the continued boom of the specialty drug market, independent pharmacies now have an option to enter the space and enjoy several advantages. After all, where revenue is concerned, specialty is the future of the pharmacy industry.
The specialty accreditation that APPA offers to its members will help distinguish a true specialty pharmacy from those which are not, and clear a widespread confusion that has been created between the two over the years.
It will also increase consumer confidence, considering that a member pharmacy must obtain one or more accreditation certifications before they can be accredited as a specialty pharmacy.
Currently, there are three most commonly seen specialty pharmacy accreditation programs which are from the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC; www.achc.org), the Community Health Accreditation Program (www.chapinc.org), and the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (www.urac.org).
With the addition of APPA’s specialty accreditation, members need not go to other organizations to get accredited.
Benefits of Specialty Accreditation
Improve service quality and standards
Specialty drug accreditations are based on standards for quality coordinated care, management strategies, and proper utilization of services that translate to better patient and consumer care and handling, something that people want and expect from pharmacies.
On the other end of the spectrum, specialty accreditation helps pharmacies improve the products they sell and the services they offer.
For contractors or those providing specialty pharmacy services, there also accreditation standards specific to them.
APPA will hold its accredited members accountable on many levels to ensure they meet the standards set.
As the industry evolves and new policies and procedures are implemented, the accreditation will force member pharmacies to review their own policies and procedures and implement the new ones.
The accreditation will provide a pharmacy or an organization a guide to improve its operations, helping them become a leader in specific products or services that they provide. This spells good news for patients and consumers.
Getting a specialty accreditation from APPA will get members recognized by key decision makers that will prove advantageous should they want to push a request for proposals with the desire to have access to limited-distribution products.
Specialty pharmacy accreditation will also increase the chances of APPA members to become part of managed care health plans that mandate specialty pharmacies to have the appropriate accreditation.
For more information about the APPA specialty accreditation, go to http://joinappa.com/.
URAC - accreditation guidance including policy and procedure development, document procurement and training specific to your pharmacy operations.
ACHC - accreditation guidance including policy and procedure development, document procurement and training specific to your pharmacy operations.
About the American Pharmacy Purchasing Alliance
The American pharmacy purchasing alliance has a community of pharmaceutical experts and professionals who are working together to achieve advancement and recognition of the specialized industry of pharmaceutical purchasing.
Through ongoing collaboration with all participants in the pharmacy purchasing industry, the alliance provides an environment where the exchange of ideas and information are encouraged as well as to ensure an increase in productivity using new technology and to find ways to further legislation that will benefit the pharmacy industry.
If you are looking for pharmaceutical purchasing strategies that are effective, efficient and compliant with new hospital and health systems and health care reforms, join APPA at https://joinappa.com/Join-us.
With the continued boom of the specialty drug market, independent pharmacies now have an option to enter the space and enjoy several advantages. After all, where revenue is concerned, specialty is the future of the pharmacy industry. In an April 2017 article on www.drugchannels.net, it is projected that by the year 2021, specialty pharmaceuticals will account for about 42% of the pharmacy industry’s $572 billion revenue. This is an increase from 2012’s 30% share of $318 billion.
Specialty accreditation will help distinguish a true specialty pharmacy from those which are not, and clear a widespread confusion that has been created between the two over the years. Becoming accredited is often the first step to establishing your pharmacy as a specialty pharmacy.
It will also increase consumer confidence, considering that a member pharmacy must obtain one or more accreditation certifications before they can be accredited as a specialty pharmacy. A seal of approval from an accreditation agency ensures your patients are receiving the highest quality care available, while setting you apart from other competition. With all other factors static, patients will likely choose an accredited pharmacy that has been deemed competent by an independent third party.
Currently, there are three most commonly seen specialty pharmacy accreditation programs which are from the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC; www.achc.org), the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation (www.pharmacypracticeaccredit.org), and the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (www.urac.org).
Specialty accreditations are based on standards for quality coordinated care, management strategies, and proper utilization of services that translate to better patient and consumer care and handling, something that people want and expect from pharmacies. Better patient care improves quality outcomes which can be shown as tangible, measurable data. It will be effortless to gain business from providers and patients with this information.
On the other end of the spectrum, specialty accreditation helps pharmacies improve the products they sell and the services they offer. When applying for certain insurance contracts or even access to limited distribution drugs, often one of the questions asked is “Which accreditation does your pharmacy hold?” Many times, an accreditation may be required to submit an application for these.
For contractors or those providing specialty pharmacy services, there also accreditation standards specific to them. For example, VAWD accreditation for wholesalers (https://nabp.pharmacy/programs/vawd/) which stands for Verified-Accredited Wholesale Distributors administered through the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) or even Health Call Center or TeleHealth accreditations which are both facilitated through URAC.
Accreditation agencies will hold its accredited members accountable on many levels to ensure they meet the standards set. Re-accreditation normally occurs approximately three years after initial accreditation and sometimes the renewal process is more rigorous than the first time around because of what’s known as the “look back period.”
As the industry evolves and new policies and procedures are implemented, the accreditation will force member pharmacies to review their own policies and procedures and implement the new ones. It is suggested that a pharmacy is extremely thorough when going through their existing policies and procedures and perhaps perform a gap analysis on current business operations.
The accreditation will provide a pharmacy or an organization a guide to improve its operations, helping them become a leader in specific products or services that they provide. This spells good news for patients and consumers, while possibly increasing revenue and profit margins on new products offered. Time spent on revamping your policies and procedures will translate into a more streamlined operation at your pharmacy.
Getting a specialty accreditation from either ACHC or URAC will get members recognized by key decision makers that will prove advantageous should they want to push a request for proposals with the desire to have access to limited distribution products. Like previously mentioned, one of the first questions asked on these proposals is regarding accreditations held by the pharmacy.
Specialty accreditation will also increase the chances of accredited pharmacies to become part of managed care health plans that mandate specialty pharmacies to have the appropriate accreditation. Accreditation is strongly recommended by these health plans currently, but there is evidence out there suggesting that accreditation could become mandatory to enter into the network. Some may require dual accreditation from at least two specialty pharmacy accreditation agencies.
URAC (Specialty Pharmacy Program) - accreditation guidance including policy and procedure development, document procurement and training specific to your pharmacy operations as well as preparation for on-site surveys
ACHC (Specialty Pharmacy and Community Retail Pharmacy Programs) - accreditation guidance including policy and procedure development, document procurement and training specific to your pharmacy operations as well as preparation for on-site surveys.
Please contact us for more information.
How many times has a patient presented to you a prescription for a “specialty medication" that you are unable to fill? It could be that you are not able to order the medication from your wholesaler. Or worse, the patient’s insurance is mandating a specific pharmacy different than yours. It can be frustrating when a current or prospective customer is coming to you, the pharmacist, for a solution to their chronic and sometimes rare, condition.
There is no finite definition for what qualifies as a “specialty medication". In general, specialty medications are used to treat chronic or complex conditions and usually require special handling or administration and close monitoring of the patient. Sometimes, these prescription medications are indicated for rare diseases, which means that the disease affects less than 10,000 people. And they are therefore given “orphan drug status” under the Orphan Drug Act of 1983. This Act allows for fast-track FDA approval for drugs intended to treat these rare diseases due to limited therapies available on the market. Obtaining fast-track approval allows the medicine to be available as quickly as possible to the patients that need it the most. This also means that the medication does not have to go through as many lengthy clinical studies as the “more” traditional therapies. Often, as a stipulation of being given fast-track approval status, the FDA may require additional aftermarket studies to be completed, meaning that the drug is available to be prescribed but the patients taking the medicine are monitored for safety and efficacy of the therapy. This is referred to as a Phase IV clinical trial. Any pharmacy that dispenses one of these drugs must understand this process and accommodate the patient and drug manufacturer for any required documentation or data.
Some specialty drug manufacturers may limit the number of pharmacies who have access to order their medication. These are deemed “Limited Distribution Drugs,” or LDDs for short. When attempting to order one of these medications from your wholesaler, you may notice that the drug’s name is not listed in the system. Or it may take you straight to a screen that reads, “due to manufacturer limitations, this product is only available through a limited distribution network” and to contact the manufacturer directly. This can be very disheartening for a pharmacist or pharmacy owner.
Upon calling the manufacturer, you may find out that in order to gain access to this drug, there are many rigorous requirements to meet first. It is also worth mentioning that all manufacturers are different and have different specifications that must be met. Many require weekly data reports so it would be prudent to know if your pharmacy’s dispensing software can accommodate customized and automatic reports. The manufacturer may also request proof that you, as the pharmacy, have a way to monitor the patient for adherence and therapy response. A common theme among these manufacturers is some sort of “specialty accreditation”. This is often the first step to becoming a Specialty Pharmacy.
Achieving accreditation proves a commitment to quality and standards that are becoming the norm in the specialty space. Accrediting bodies such as the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) and the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (URAC) are arguably the most reputable in the field. Both sets of standards set the stage for core activities such as:
o Patient Care
o Coordination of Care and/or Delegation
o Information Management
o Compliance Program
o Quality Management and Continuous Quality Improvement, etc.
Accreditation is strongly recommended but could become mandatory by payers in the near future in order to ascertain preferred contracts for reimbursement purposes. This means extra revenue for your pharmacy by adding a specialty line of business. The entire process can take up to six months to a year for full accreditation and can be very arduous and labor intensive.
If all of this is intimidating to you, just know that you are not alone. The key is to connect with a professional who has been through the process. Ideally, they should have been able to achieve and has maintained accreditation for some time. Embarking on a project like this size could be overwhelming and a competent expert can guide you through the process.
There are many resources available though, if you choose to take on a project independently. However, there is a lot of competition out there in specialty pharmacy but accreditation can set you apart from others. Visit www.ACHC.org or www.URAC.org to learn more about the various programs in accreditation and visit www.HVRSSolutions.com/services-offered to learn more about guidance through the process. HVRS Solutions provides necessary paperwork required for accreditations such as policies and procedures and staff training documentations and will also assist you in preparing you and your pharmacy staff for on-site surveys. All services are customizable and personalized to your individual business needs.
So you’ve decided to take the plunge and apply for accreditation for your pharmacy. But which one should you apply for? There are a ton of accreditations out there, and even more acronyms to go along with them. ACHC, URAC, TJC, CPPA, VIPPS… Can you tell the difference between these? Don’t feel bad if you can’t. The overall process of applying for accreditation can be daunting. When deciding which one to go with, remember what led you to this decision in the first place. By selecting a “niche” for your pharmacy, such as specialty, compounding, or home health, you might want to research what other similar pharmacies are accredited for.
ACHC, which stands for the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (www.achc.org) has several accreditation programs, including community retail pharmacy, compounding, home health, specialty pharmacy, hospital pharmacy, and many more. They are what’s known as a deeming authority for third parties such as Medicare and Medicaid meaning they can determine which facilities meet certain certification requirements. ACHC places a strong focus on the on-site survey after reviewing your policies, to ensure that pharmacy staff follows the same procedures day in and day out.
The Utilization Review Accreditation Commission is better known as URAC (www.urac.org). URAC is often considered the gold standard for specialty pharmacy accreditation but they also accredit other programs such as community pharmacy, mail service pharmacy, and even health plan and PBM (pharmacy benefit management) accreditations. There are usually measurement reporting requirements with most URAC accreditation programs. URAC will spend some time reviewing your policies and may request corrections before performing their on-site survey.
TJC is The Joint Commission (www.jointcommission.org). The Joint Commission has traditionally been known for its hospital accreditations but they also offer pharmacy accreditation program as well as home health care. Many pharmacy owners might not go this route unless the pharmacy also offers home health care, but for awhile The Joint Commission was one of the only accrediting bodies available, so it is important for you to know that this is an option. The Joint Commission is also considered a deeming authority for Medicare and Medicaid.
CPPA is the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation (www.pharmacypracticeaccredit.org) and is relatively newer compared to the other accreditations we’ve discussed so far. CPPA accredits three pharmacy programs currently, and those are community pharmacy, specialty pharmacy, and telehealth pharmacy. The American Pharmacists Association (APhA), the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), and the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) partnered up to form CPPA in 2012.
VIPPS stands for Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites and was developed in response to illegal online pharmacies that were operating to the detriment of the public. Some pharmacies may not qualify right off the bat due to ownership or other disqualifications. Be sure to contact VIPPS at https://nabp.pharmacy/programs/vipps/ to find out specifications before spending a lot of time on their policies and standards. Once a pharmacy is VIPPS accredited, the pharmacy may be able to advertise online with search engines like Google. This might be the biggest benefit to going through with VIPPS accreditation. The NABP (https://nabp.pharmacy) acknowledges the VIPPS accreditation program and the VPP (Verified Pharmacy Program) is a separate service that administers the survey. It is also worth noting that you can contact VPP for an inspection for any reason, as some insurance contracts may request one within a certain date range. The State Board of Pharmacy inspects pharmacies but oftentimes if your pharmacy is following state rules and regulations, it may have been some time since your last BOP inspection.
Pharmacy Accreditation agencies are just third parties that evaluate pharmacies to determine they meet certain standards pursuant to an application for accreditation. All of them have their own set of standards and requirements but they are also all similar in a way that by gaining these accreditations, you and your pharmacy demonstrate that you are committed to patient care and improving quality outcomes. If you wish to become a Specialty Pharmacy, first check any insurance or PBM contracts that you will be signing, to see if they require one accreditation over another. Many might require dual-accreditation meaning that you must choose two agencies to apply for and obtain. The entire process requires commitment. Commitments of time and resources to patient care and quality improvement. You will be looking at an average of about six to nine months for each accreditation. All will consist of an application process involving a thorough review of policies and procedures and an on-site survey to determine the pharmacy is following the procedures adequately. The accreditation agency will then make a decision to grant their “seal” for the pharmacy to proudly display and the pharmacy can then be placed on the agency’s website of accredited organizations.
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How Physician and Pharmacist Integration generates Innovation
Physicians didn’t spend long years in school to have two-thirds of their work-day be comprised of data entry task.
Pharmacists didn't spend long years of school to have two-thirds of their work-day consist of filling and dispensing medications.
Both professions went to school so that they can perform at the top of their license and modernize today's healthcare era; bringing revolutionary solutions to the healthcare industry. It’s already apparent that we prefer to avoid the administrative burden, as it disrupts our workflow and takes time away from spending with the patient.
Our reimbursement model has changed and went from fee for service to now value-based care.
Physicians are the Medicine experts, while Pharmacists are the medication experts. Both professions are considered predominant healthcare leaders in the industry.
Physicians are the first point of contact to diagnose and assess appropriately, while Pharmacists are the last line of defense to verify that the appropriate treatments were prescribed.
It’s clear that both professions possess a high pedigree of clinical knowledge.
Why do we separate the two entities, instead of bringing them closer together?
Primary-care physicians, participation in a care-team program can ease the burden associated with the management of complex-care patients. It also provides a way to better manage the cost of these patients by optimizing their health and functional status, decreasing excess healthcare use, minimizing emergency department visits and other hospital utilization (including readmissions), and preventing long-term nursing home placement.
What’s going on in the Physician private practice world, is also going on in the pharmacy private practice world.
According to the American Medical Association, less than half of physicians own their medical practice. “First-time ever” its been this low.
According to the NCPA (National Community Pharmacist Association) digest report, there has been a steep drop in independently owned pharmacy practices compared to previous years.
Ownership and employment shifts reflect the industry's increasing compliance costs and new payment models.
Health systems have been aggressively mopping up the physician practices, while the Large-chained pharmacies have been aggressively mopping up the small mom and pop independent pharmacies.
The common reasons shared for selling their practice:
With the collaboration of Physician and Pharmacy private practices, it can help eradicate a bulk of the problems both professions face and help revolutionize healthcare.
Ways a Pharmacist can help improved value-based care models for Physicians:
How can a Physician be of aid to a Pharmacist:
In hindsight, Physician & Pharmacist collaboration has the potential to create a robust HealthSystem for patients and also produce a stronger buy-in from insurance companies.
Population health is the current and future trend of healthcare. We can start synergizing our talents and bring out the best in value-based care practice models.
The more prominent players are already adopting vertical integration strategies to help create a more user-friendly and efficient healthcare system. Why can’t we?
In essence, “we have to STOP advertising and START innovating.”
Working as a Hospital Pharmacy Buyer is not suitable for every individual. These individuals are assigned to manage the largest cost for the hospitals. All of them need advanced skills that take time, training and additional education to master. A hospital pharmacy buyer has many roles. These roles require skills in cost-effective procurement, understanding vendor contracts, budgets, 340B purchasing where applicable, generic forecasting, inventory management and a number of other initiatives designed to reduce drug waste and expiring medications.
Although many areas in the pharmacy have advanced and adopted many new technologies; most pharmacy procurement in hospitals and health systems is performed exactly as it was 15 years ago. We all have seen many such hospitals and health systems where inventory is in the poorest conditions. This tremendous holding cost poses significant risk to the pharmacy for waste and expired medications. Reducing holding cost and cash tied up in inventory increases net income and profitability for the pharmacy department and the hospital. Recommendations suggest that a minimum target goal of 12 recorded turns is reasonable for any hospital or health system pharmacy.
What is a 340B Drug Pricing Program?
The 340B Drug Discount Program is a U.S federal government program, which was created in 1992. It requires drug manufacturers to provide outpatient drugs to eligible health care organizations/covered entities at significantly reduced prices. The purpose of the program was to allow covered bodies to "stretch scarce federal resources as far as possible, reaching more eligible patients and providing more comprehensive services.”
According to a research, overly broad eligibility criteria for hospitals have led to an outburst in the number of hospitals that have come into the 340B program. Today, there are approximately one-third of all hospitals in the country, which participate in the 340B program and get 340B discounts; that number is expected to grow, particularly absent an effort to tighten eligibility requirements.
Eligibility for 340B program
A hospital pharmacy buyer is defined under federal law. Six categories of hospitals are eligible to participate in the program: disproportionate share hospitals (DSHs), children’s hospitals and cancer hospitals exempt from the Medicare prospective payment system, sole community hospitals, rural referral centers, and critical access hospitals (CAH).
What should be done by a Hospital Pharmacy Buyer?
Manage the medicines - The important thing a Hospital Pharmacy Buyer should do is the management of the medicines. He should not buy more medicines, which can expire soon. Adding to it, he should not buy few medicines, which can create a shortage.
Understanding retailer contracts - If you will not understand your retailer, you will not be able to communicate. Communication is the most important thing in any transaction. A hospital pharmacy buyer should able to communicate easily with the vendor or else a great lose can happen.
Budget - Budget is always an important thing, which should be kept in mind in by every hospital pharmacy buyer. After knowing the budget, the next step is to make a list. In that list, one should write the things where he is going to use his money.
American Society of Health-System Pharmacists is another organization, which takes care of all the health records of pharmacy departments. American pharmacy purchasing alliance is a community, which doesn’t have any profit. It helps the hospital pharmacy buyer to buy the products and sell it. American pharmacy purchasing alliance works for their country.
Knowledge - Every hospital should increase the knowledge of their pharmacy buyer. The hospital pharmacy buyer can make the hospital touch the sky. The recruiters should keep in mind the different prospects so that they can attain success with their hospital pharmacy buyers.
Being a retail pharmacist is one of the most common job opportunities for pharmacy professionals, especially because of the growing number of pharmacies all over the world. A retail pharmacist, however, do more than just dispense medicines and other healthcare products. They will be dealing with clients, after all, which is why they also need excellent communication skills. If you are a brand new retail pharmacist, there are some things you need to remember.
DO keep track of significant events and any questions you might encounter on your first day
You can keep a notebook and write down and the things that need to be clarified or dealt with. Do you need to research more on medicine, indications warnings, etc.? Is there a need to improve Pharmacy purchasing policy or best practices based on your experience?
DON’T get stuck on the retail side of things
Being a retail pharmacist should be a stepping stone to something greater, so make sure you don't get stuck with just dispensing medications. You should also take an interest in the business side, particularly the metrics essential to running a retail pharmacy business. Before you direct your attention in doing business, however, you should first familiarize and master retail pharmacy.
DO learn from the veterans
You will learn plenty of things working as a retail pharmacist, but other pharmacists that have been in the business for a long time makes the best teachers. So get to know the veterans in the pharmacy you’re working in and spend time learning from them.
DON’T forget to follow up with some patients
Your job as a retail pharmacist should not stop behind the counter. To develop your skills as a retail pharmacist, it is important that you follow up with some patients, especially when they start a new medication. Even if this is not required of you, patients will surely appreciate your call.
DO master the steps involved in billing
At some point in your career as a retail pharmacist, you might be required to handle billing, which can be quite complex. When given the opportunity, you should take advantage of it and write down all the things you need to remember, such as the BIN number, Medicare Part B bill for test strips, etc. If necessary, create a cheat sheet.
DON’T worry about keeping up
It is normal to worry about the speed with which you take orders, dispense medication, and handle the rest of the process. During peak hours, your speed and skills will be sorely tested. However, keeping up is not about how quick you work, but how you complete a transaction available, software shortcuts, and protocols, among others.
DO keep learning
To get things done right and fast, you should stock up on software, policy and customer knowledge, and other information relevant to your job as a retail pharmacist. You should also develop your own DUR approach, one that you can easily remember and help you succeed with your work. You should also develop counseling habits, so you can provide excellent customer services.
CareMates Nitrile Medical Examination Gloves Offer Safest Consumer Protection from Fentanyl and Chemotherapy Drugs
CareMates Nitrile is Tested for Use with 15 Chemotherapy Drugs and Fentanyl,
the Safest Examination Glove Available for Retail Consumers
Shepard Medical Products announced today their newly formulated CareMates Nitrile Medical Examination Gloves were developed to protect patient caregivers from exposure to poisonous chemotherapy drugs and Fentanyl. CareMates Nitrile Gloves have been tested for use and meet ASTM Standard D6978 for Resistance to Permeation by Hazardous Drugs for 15 different cytotoxic (chemotherapy and home infusion) drugs and the drug Fentanyl. Available through retail pharmacies and medical distributors, CareMates Nitrile is formulated to protect family members, medical staff, first responders, compounding pharmacies and lab technicians, and anyone who comes in contact with people going through chemotherapy treatment or who is exposed to Fentanyl.
CareMates Nitrile Examination Gloves are available in 10ct, 50ct and 100ct packages, in a variety of sizes. CareMates Nitrile gloves feature a patented low-dermatitis formulation, have
0% viral penetration, 0% alcohol permeation, and meet the ASTM Standard for Infection Control. In addition to protection from chemotherapy and Fentanyl drugs, CareMates Nitrile gloves are also recommended for a wide variety of everyday infection protection needs like general health care, first aid, home infusion drugs, baby care, diabetes care, and more.
“Our reformulated CareMates Nitrile Medical Examination Glove is now the best Nitrile glove available only in the (INDEPENDENT) retail pharmacy market. Shepard Medical is committed to creating high quality products you can trust and that are very affordable,” said Chris Humbert, President of Shepard Medical Products.
Protection from exposure to poisonous drugs is necessary for anyone who comes in contact with cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or Fentanyl drug users. The danger of exposure to dangerous drugs includes cross-contamination through transfer of body fluids, touching patient’s skin, handling clothes, bed linens or towels, among many others. According to Onco-Link, “Acute exposure to body fluids or the chemotherapy drug itself can cause rash, nausea and vomiting, dizziness, abdominal pain, headache, nasal sores and allergic reactions. Exposure over a longer period of time (such as is seen with nurses and pharmacists) is thought to be associated with birth defects, reproductive losses and cancer later in life.” The Drug Enforcement Administration says fentanyl is 30-50 times more potent than heroin and 50-100 times more potent than morphine. Fentanyl exposure may cause death.
About Shepard Medical Products and CareMates
Since 1986, Shepard Medical Products has been an industry leader in the field of Infection Protection for healthcare, home and workplace. Throughout the company’s history, Shepard has been committed to providing customers with the highest quality latex and synthetic gloves, protective masks, and related infection protection products. Shepard Medical Products is committed ONLY to INDEPENDENT PHARMACY, never Big-Box pharmacy! We have the commitment to finding solutions to customer needs that has led to products that exceed regulatory standards throughout the world, as well as the development of proprietary products, like the CareMates Infection Protection Line.
For more information, call (800) 354-5683, (630) 462-6720 or visit www.care-mates.com.
CareMates Nitrile PDF Flyer
Most people believe that pharmacists only work behind the counter of a pharmacy. Little do they know, being a pharmacist is just one of the many job opportunities for pharmacy professionals. Depending on where they work, they can take on a wide range of roles.
The primary role of a pharmacist is to dispense medications, give advice on drugs, especially with regard to the side effects, interactions and other relevant information. This is why they need to learn more than just the medications. They also need to learn to engage with patients and clients. They're also responsible for storing, formulating and providing correct dosage of medicines.
Pharmacist work in several different settings, such as retail, clinics, home health care facilities, home infusion facilities, armed services, public health service, internet companies, and other settings. These provide plenty of job opportunities for pharmacy professionals.
Community pharmacists serve patients and clients within the community, providing them with information and advice, health medication and other associated services. The job description is basically the same as a regular pharmacist, except for their place of business. Some community pharmacists also specialize in the science and clinical use of medications.
A lot of community pharmacists combine their professional talents and use it to build their own pharmacy. Some of them may start with a management position within a chain pharmacy practice and then move on to become owners, one of the job opportunities for pharmacy professionals that earn more. To succeed as a business owner, pharmacists must take advantage of management development programs offered by chain companies. These include marketing operations, third-party programs, pharmacy affairs, legal affairs and computerization.
Managed Care Pharmacist
Managed care organizations offer job opportunities for pharmacy professionals. The setting is designed to optimize patient care and outcomes, and pharmaceutical care helps improve access to primary and preventive care in the most appropriate and cost-effective manner. As managed care continues to grow and assumes a larger role in the healthcare system, job opportunities for pharmacy professionals also continue to grow.
Managed care pharmacists usually work directly with physicians and caregivers that give medical treatments, such as drug therapy. The task involves reviewing medical literature regularly and identifying the safest and most effective medications. The work also includes creating care management programs.
Pharmacy Purchaser / Pharmacy Procurement Officer
Job opportunities for pharmacy professionals don't stop and start behind the counter. They can be purchasers and buyers as well. Pharmacy procurement facilitates purchasing of medicines that meet safety and health standards at a cost-effective price. The job begins with a draft of purchase order, ensure that the order meets the allocated budget; reviews purchase orders, and provide necessary documentation. Pharmacy procurement also involves keeping accurate records of all the medicine in possession and other tasks related to inventory. In whatever they do, pharmacy purchaser must abide by the rules and regulations in place and ensure quality services.
Colleges and schools of pharmacy also offer job opportunities for pharmacy professionals. In this setting, they work as full-time faculty members, teaching, researching and providing pointers on public service and patient care. To become an academic pharmacist or a member of a college or university faculty, an aspiring pharmacist is usually required to have postgraduate degree and training. If they meet a school’s requirements, they can choose from a wide range of job opportunities for pharmacy professionals in an academic setting.
Despite the growing number of pharmaceutical companies and drug manufacturers, there are still plenty of hard to find brand name drugs. There are plenty of reasons that some medications are in short supply, but one thing is for sure, it is causing a lot of problems. According to the news, drug shortage may be linked to cancer relapse in kids. But how do you explain shortage of intravenous saline, which is supposed to be in abundant supply in hospitals?
Cancer specialists say that manufacturing problems that pharmaceutical plants are experiencing may cause shortage of critical cancer drugs. Regardless, the problem is hitting cancer patient extra hard, especially because doctors have to substitute with more expensive alternatives. According to FDA, in 2011, there were over 250 drugs that were in very short supply, over 120 in 2012, and over 300 in 2013.
Medications that have become hard to find brand name drugs are forcing healthcare workers to make painful choices. In the case of cancer patients, specialists had to switch to chemotherapies that may be not as effective (http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/06/03/drug-shortages-cancer-patients/2382597/) as using hard to find brand name drugs. The problem also caused delays in treatment, giving cancer more time to spread.
Some of the hard to find brand name drugs are the following:
Ultiva is a narcotic pain reliever that is used to prevent and treat pain that occur during and after surgery and procedures. It dulls the pain perception center in the brain, increasing the patients’ threshold of pain. Because it has become a Bioniche product, along with changes in the packaging and NDC, Ultiva has now become one of the hard to find brand name drugs. It is in short supply nationwide, this is why hospitals and physicians are looking for alternatives. Unfortunately, Ultiva or remifentaril was also an alternative for other drugs, such as Pethidine that was used to relieve pain during birth.
Anectine is used to relax muscles during surgery or when using a ventilator. It is also used to induce a similar effect of anesthesia when inserting a tube in the windpipe. As a depolarizing muscle relaxant, it keeps the muscles from contracting, especially those in the face and those used for moving and breathing. Unfortunately, Anectine is now one of the hard to find brand name drugs. A lot of pharmacies and facilities are now searching for establishments that supply Anectine. Unfortunately, this is one of those hard to find brand name drugs that don't have a generic version, at least there is none that is approved by FDA.
Morphine carpujects are basically morphine in a vial and syringe system. They are easier to use because there will be no need to draw up morphine into a syringe. But these are only applicable to hospitals that allow the use of syringe smaller than 10cc on central lines.
The morphine (http://www.drugs.com/morphine.html) contained in carpujects is an opioid pain medication used to treat moderate to severe pain. Because of its short acting formulation it is only taken as needed. Use of morphine after surgery is not recommended unless morphine has already been taken before the surgery. Unfortunately, this product has also become one of the hard to find brand name drugs.
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