Pharmacists should step up if doctors won’t

Pharmacists should step up if doctors won’t

From the Associated Press in the Wall Street Journal:

In recordings of 185 patient visits, doctors failed to mention a new drug’s side effects or how long to take the drug in about two-thirds of the visits. The research suggests that patients and their doctors must work harder, said Patrick O’Connor of HealthPartners Research Foundation in Minneapolis. “Patients need to ask, ‘‘What are the most important medicines in my treatment, the ones that will help me live long enough to see my grandchildren grow up?'”

That’s a nice quote Dr. O’Connor, but do you really expect docs to “work harder” and react positively when patients ask them such trite questions? My suggestion is to bring the pharmacist into the loop, to provide information at the time of dispensing and reinforcement at refill time. It would help if pharmacists had access to the patient’s medical record.

If pharmacists are too busy maybe the Phoenix police department can fill the gap.

September 28, 2006

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