Prevalence and types of disease management programs in community pharmacies in California.

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OBJECTIVES: To (1) evaluate the prevalence and types of disease management (DM) programs provided by independent and chain community pharmacies in the state of California, (2) examine the interest among community pharmacists in establishing programs, and (3) assess perceived barriers to developing a successful DM program in community pharmacy. METHOD: An exploratory telephone survey was conducted from February 2003 to February 2004 to collect data from community (primarily independent and chainstore) pharmacies across California. The survey evaluated existence (or lack of) and types of DM programs in community pharmacies in California. Pharmacies that did not have a DM program were queried on their interest and decisionmaking authority in establishing new programs. Pharmacies that had existing DM programs were sent a follow-up survey to determine the details of the DM programs, including challenges in establishing DM programs, reimbursement issues, and program effectiveness. RESULTS: The sample comprised 1,875 pharmacies, 60 (3.2%) of which had existing DM programs. There were significantly more independent pharmacies (37) with DM programs than chain-store pharmacies (23), P<0.001. There was a statistically significant difference between independent and chain pharmacies in operating hours, number of pharmacist and nonpharmacist staff members per day, and proximity to a clinic or hospital (P<0.05). The most common type of DM program was diabetes, and the second most common type was asthma. Limited time, limited staff, and limited reimbursement were the 3 most commonly reported barriers to establishing new DM programs. About 20% of the sample that did not have a DM program reported interest in developing DM programs, and an equal percentage reported having the decision-making authority to start a program. There were no differences between independent and chain pharmacies on interest (P = 0.234); however, there were significantly more chain pharmacists that did not have the decision-making authority. Of the 18 of 60 pharmacies (30%) that had DM programs and responded to the follow-up survey, 9 respondents (50%) reported monitoring medications as part of their DM program. Fifteen of 18 (83%) perceived lack of reimbursement as a challenge to implementing DM programs. Only 2 pharmacies reported an increase in revenue as a gain from the program, and 2 reported cost savings. Improved patient satisfaction was reported by 16 of 18 respondents (89%) with DM programs, but only 8 (44%) reported that patient satisfaction was being measured. CONCLUSION: The study found that the prevalence of DM programs was very low among California community pharmacies and the interest in developing these programs moderate, attributable to several barriers such as lack of time, lack of reimbursement, and lack of trained personnel. Some of these barriers could be addressed to encourage the development and proliferation of DM programs that would improve patient outcomes and expand practice roles of pharmacists.

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Journal of managed care pharmacy : JMCP





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This article was published in Journal of managed care pharmacy : JMCP, Volume 11, Issue 6, Pages 505-512.

The published version is available at http://www.amcp.org/JMCP/2005/July-August/7212/1033.html.

Copyright © 2005 AMCP.

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