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GTMRx News Brief

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12Oct 21

News Brief | October 12, 2021 | Low health care system literacy growing, affects vax rate

Practice Transformation CMMI signals big changes The CMS Innovation Center (CMMI) is signaling it plans to restructure payment models to crack down on inappropriate coding, shift the focus of value-based programs to reduce patient inequities and cut down on initiatives that only serve to empower dominant providers with large market shares, Modern Healthcare reports. "Providers, once they're motivated by a risk budget or other incentive, they can get very creative with coding," says Dr. Mai Pham, former head of CMMI.…

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05Oct 21

News Brief | October 5, 2021 | CMM’s benefits “without debate”

Practice Transformation Optimizing medication use for rural vets The current issue of The Rural Connection includes an article on leveraging clinical pharmacists to increase rural veteran access. It reports on the success of the Clinical Pharmacy Practice Rural Veteran Access (CRVA) initiative—a veteran-centric, whole-health comprehensive medication management initiative to ensure medication optimization is prioritized in primary care, pain management and mental health practice areas. Among other areas, the effort had particular success supporting veterans with substance use disorders. (The Rural Connection) Evidence…

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28Sep 21

News Brief | September 28, 2021 | Integrating pharmacists into primary care: Four questions

Practice Transformation Integrating pharmacists into primary care: Four questions Integrating pharmacists into primary care can bring tremendous benefits, but an Advisory Board survey found that only about half of primary care clinics have dedicated pharmacy support, though this person may be shared across multiple sites. To help other practices make the transition, the Advisory Board suggests four questions for PCPs to ask: What is your program’s primary goal? Who is the pharmacist’s end customer? Where should you locate pharmacists? How…

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21Sep 21

News Brief | September 21, 2021 | COVID vaccine as mood enhancement?

Practice Transformation Walgreens, Blue Shield collab focuses on whole-person care Blue Shield of California and Walgreens have joined forces in what they call an effort to improve condition management and deliver whole-person care. Eligible beneficiaries will be able to get blood pressure screenings, mammography care coordination and other services through Walgreens' Health Corner locations. The sites will be staffed with pharmacists, dieticians and/or nurses. The program, which includes in-store, at-home and virtual care, is expected to launch by early 2022.…

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14Sep 21

News Brief | September 14, 2021 | HHS drug plan links payments to clinical value

Practice Transformation Mayo’s remote monitoring success Mayo Clinic's COVID-19 Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) Program has served more than 7,000 patients across 41 states, and it may be a model for others. A recent study found that a multisite RPM program for management of acute COVID-19 “is feasible, safe, and associated with a low mortality rate.” The study also demonstrates the efficacy of incorporating interventions that support patient access and engagement and mitigate digital health disparities: The program had an overall patient…

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07Sep 21

News Brief | September 7, 2021 | Leaders: Create federal council to coordinate primary care

Practice Transformation Dollar General eyes rural health care possibilities Dollar General is expanding its health care presence, the Wall Street Journal reports. In July, it hired a chief medical officer, a new position in an August earnings call, CEO Todd Vasos—who comes out of the drugstore sector—said the company is considering services that rural America doesn’t have access to—such as eye care, telemedicine and prescription delivery to stores. But for the most part, the retailer is keeping mum about its health strategy.…

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31Aug 21

News Brief | August 31, 2021 | Political fortitude required for value-based care

Practice Transformation CMS’ vision: coordinated, team-based and equitable care The future of value-based care includes reducing the number of payment models and increasing health equity, according to CMS. It plans to prioritize coordinated, team-based care, outcomes measurements that matter to patients, and holding providers more accountable, CMS and CMS Innovation Center leaders wrote in a recent Health Affairs Blog post. Their objective: a health system that eliminates disparities through high-quality, affordable and person-centered care. The agency plans to put health care equity…

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24Aug 21

News Brief | August 24, 2021 | CBD may alleviate clinician burnout

Practice Transformation CMS’ vision: coordinated, team-based and equitable care The future of value-based care includes reducing the number of payment models and increasing health equity, according to CMS. It plans to prioritize coordinated, team-based care, outcomes measurements that matter to patients, and holding providers more accountable, CMS and CMS Innovation Center leaders wrote in a recent Health Affairs Blog post. Their objective: a health system that eliminates disparities through high-quality, affordable and person-centered care. The agency plans to put health care equity…

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17Aug 21

News Brief | August 17, 2021 | A predictive blood test for dementia?

Practice Transformation PCPs are worried, and vaccine hesitancy isn’t helping Primary care clinicians are tired and worried, according to a new survey from the from the Larry A. Green Center and the Primary Care Collaborative. Fully 40% of respondents say they worry that primary care will be gone in five years. Vaccine hesitancy plays a role, with 53% noting that hesitancy is high and hard to counter—and it’s contributing to burnout. "While the pressure is now on primary care to…

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10Aug 21

News Brief | August 10, 2021 | Drug utilization management costs $93.3B++

Practice Transformation Affordability: HDHPs associated with skipped diabetes meds Research published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine finds that 20% of people with diabetes and high-deductible health plans regularly skip their medications. Compared to people without HDHPs, people with high deductibles are 28% more likely to not take their medicines on time due to cost. “Patients with diabetes should recognize that a high-deductible plan will put them at risk for missing or delaying their medications, and doctors need to recognize that…

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03Aug 21

News Brief | August 3, 2021 | Addressing CMM implementation in community pharmacy.

Practice Transformation Pandemic drives exodus from private practice The pandemic accelerated the move from private practice to corporate medicine, Fierce Healthcare reports. Between Jan. 1, 2019, and Jan. 1, 2021, hospitals, payers and other entities acquired 20,900 practices, according to the Physicians Advocacy Institute. During that period, 48,400 physicians left independent practice to work for a larger employer. Most of this activity occurred between July 1, 2020, and Jan. 1, 2021. As of Jan. 1, 2021, nearly half of all U.S. practices…

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27Jul 21

News Brief | July 27, 2021 | Researchers develop CMM common language documents

Practice Transformation Success: VA’s move to virtual CMM during pandemic When the VA transitioned pharmacist-led outpatient CMM clinics to all-virtual care, the consistency and quality of care was not compromised; in fact, the program saw more patients and documented more encounters, and the no-show rate dropped. The findings were published in the Journal of The American College of Clinical Pharmacy. “[T]his is a positive discovery regarding the potential future direction of CPS [clinical pharmacy specialists] provided direct patient care in telemedicine…

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20Jul 21

News Brief | July 20, 2021 | Researchers identify genetic role in COVID severity and infection

Practice Transformation Personalized vax outreach seems to work A new KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor report finds many individuals who were initially hesitant to get a COVID-19 vaccine in January, but ultimately did get one, say that family, friends and their personal doctors helped change their minds. KFF found that 54% of those who said in January they wanted to “wait and see” have received at least one dose. However, 76% of people who had previously said they would “only get…

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13Jul 21

News Brief | July 13, 2021 | US life expectancy falls behind; COVID a factor

Practice Transformation Biden vax effort focuses on trusted messengers President Biden last week announced a summer-long initiative to reach the vaccine-resistant. Outreach will become increasingly granular, and it will include going door-to-door and visiting places of worship. Primary care will play a large role: “My team is going to place renewed emphasis on getting the vaccines to more and more family doctors and health care providers so more Americans can get this shot at their doctor’s office from the folks…

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06Jul 21

News Brief | July 6, 2021 | Study: Poorly designed EHRs accelerates burnout, hurts patients

Practice Transformation AMA: Under 4% of docs remain unvaccinated More than 96% of U.S. physicians have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, according to a new AMA survey. Of the physicians who are not yet vaccinated, 45% intend to get one. The most common reason cited for not receiving the vaccine: It’s too new and has unknown long-term effects. The survey revealed no significant differences in physician vaccination rates across various demographic groups, including primary care vs specialist, region, gender, age…

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29Jun 21

News Brief | June 29, 2021 | Outcomes-based contracts get a boost

Practice Transformation New org to advance primary care Primary care is the key to transforming health care in America, write ACP President George M. Abraham, MD, MPH, and AAFP President Ada D. Stewart, MD. With that, they announced the launch of Primary Care for America, a collaboration focused on demonstrating the value of primary care. “Unfortunately, the US health care system has long over-emphasized and over-invested in the sub-specialization of physicians and the specialization of care.” The result: a health care…

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22Jun 21

News Brief | June 22, 2021 | Telehealth use still declining

Practice Transformation Maybe it’s not comorbidities Patients with cardiovascular disease who had worse composite scores for six social determinants of health—including education, 30-day food security and health insurance—were less likely to adhere to all the measures recommended to lower their risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19, according to research published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes. “Identifying and prioritizing individuals whose medical vulnerability is compounded by social adversity may optimize emerging preventive efforts, including vaccination guidelines,” the researchers conclude. (Circulation: Cardiovascular…

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15Jun 21

Special Edition News Brief | June 15, 2021 | Report and Recommendations of the GTMRx National Task Force—Building Vaccine Confidence in the Health Neighborhood

Today, the GTMRx National Task Force released an important new report: Report and Recommendations—Building Vaccine Confidence in the Health Neighborhood. Task Force calls for community action and changes to create grassroots organizations called Vaccine Confidence Leagues. What GTMRx Task Force Leaders are saying:  Local leaders can address today’s vaccine concerns and help instill long-term confidence in the scientific discoveries that can help protect us in the future,” said Paul W. Abramowitz, Pharm.D., Sc.D. (Hon), FASHP, CEO of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and a…

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08Jun 21

News Brief | June 8, 2021 | CMM in ICU: lower costs, better drug safety

Practice Transformation Integrating drug, medical benefits saves money, improves outcomes Highmark group customers with integrated medical and pharmacy benefits saved an average of $150-$230 per member per year compared to those with carved-out pharmacy benefits, according to independent analysis by HealthScape Advisors. The savings were driven by shorter episodes of care, enhanced chronic care management and increased member engagement. The analysis is based on three years of claims data, from 2017 to 2019. Group clients who offered integrated benefits saw…

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01Jun 21

News Brief | June 1, 2021 | The elephant in the room: appropriate use of medications

Practice Transformation The elephant in the room: appropriate use of medications The most pressing issues related to managing medications isn’t cost; it’s the lack of communication between prescribers and pharmacists, according to a recent Get the Medications Right (GTMRx) Institute survey of health leaders. That by itself is significant, but it points to a larger issue, says GTMRx Executive Director, Katherine Capps: appropriate use of medications. Outside of the opioid crisis, “the tragedy of medication misadventures” is rarely discussed, much…

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