From the American Pharmacists Association Focus newsletter: Molly Ekstrand, BSPharm, counseled several patients who were referred to her through the primary care clinic at Fairview Health Services in Minneapolis, where she worked as a medication therapy management (MTM) pharmacist. She remembers one instance in particular. The patient was in her late 40s and on a complex medication regimen; she didn’t want to take her medications because of the adverse effects. The regimen was also hard to follow because of dosing.
Ekstrand had some suggestions for optimizing the patient’s drug therapy that could be helpful for the patient’s nephrologist, Rajiv Shah, MD, to know about.
“I faxed the letter to the clinic and that started my working relationship with Dr. Shah,” Ekstrand, who now works as an MTM pharmacist at Park Nicollet Health Services, told Pharmacy Today.
Although Shah has always been an advocate for pharmacists—especially as a nephrologist who deals with complex medication dosing and intensive regimens for kidney disease and transplant patients—he hadn’t realized until Ekstrand faxed the letter over that an MTM service existed in the outpatient setting.
“When you think about what patients can do to impact their care it’s a healthy lifestyle but also taking the medications they are prescribed,” Shah told Today. “No one can force patients to take their pills but if you empower them and educate them about why it’s important, that’s huge.”