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Practice Transformation

More MA plans to take on SDOH 
More Medicare Advantage plans will offer supplemental benefits that address social determinants of health such as meals, nutrition and transportation—at $0 premium, according to analysis by Avalere Health. For 2022, meal delivery was the most common benefit, with 68% of plans offering the benefit. The second most popular was transportation services with 39%, followed by nutrition at 30% and in-home support services with 11%. (Avalere analysisFierce Healthcare)
More doctors spend time correcting misinformation
More than half of doctors spend time correcting COVID vaccine misinformation from their patients, according to survey data from Sermo. That’s an increase from six months ago. Among the most common misconceptions: The vaccine modifies your DNA; it causes infertility; it contains a microchip; and it will give you COVID-19. The survey also found that 87% of doctors say that depression and other mental health issues remain the biggest non-COVID-19 related public health concern. (BioPharma Dive)

Evidence & Innovation

Study calls for optimization, deprescribing
Research published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that 18% of U.S. adults diagnosed with hypertension reported taking medications that may actually increase blood pressure. The findings “indicate an important opportunity to improve BP control by optimizing medication regimens, an approach that has the potential to also reduce polypharmacy and medication regimen complexity,” the authors wrote. “Clinicians caring for patients with hypertension should routinely screen for medications that may cause elevated BP and consider deprescribing, replacing them with safer therapeutic alternatives and minimizing the dose and duration of use when alternatives are not available. (MedPage TodayJAMA Internal Medicine)
Consumers wary of DNA use, facial-recognition tech
Facial recognition technologies hold promise, but over 70% of patients responding to a survey said they were “very” or “somewhat” concerned about data privacy when asked about a hypothetical precision health study that would use DNA and facial recognition technology, according to research published in PLOS One. A quarter of respondents reported they would prefer to opt out of the DNA component of a study, 11.5% would opt out of facial imaging and 22% reported they would prefer to opt out of both. (Health IT SecurityPLOS One)

Policy Solutions

Aggressive DEA reduces access to buprenorphine
Lawyers, pharmacists, harm-reduction advocates and a former DEA employee tell Kaiser Health News that the DEA’s aggressive stance on buprenorphine is scaring pharmacies away from dispensing this medication when it’s desperately needed. The federal government has taken steps to increase the number of clinicians who prescribe buprenorphine, but patients struggle to get those prescriptions filled. “Pharmacies are terrified they’re going to lose their DEA registration and go out of business,” said Charles “Buck” Selby, a former inspector and chief compliance officer for the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy. (Kaiser Health News)
Lost opportunities: Z codes for SDOH underused
ICD-10 Z codes, useful for identifying and tracking Medicare beneficiaries’ social determinants of health, were reported for only 1.6% of beneficiaries in 2019, according to a new CMS report. Among the reasons why it’s so rarely used: Z codes are not generally used for payment purposes, so there is no financial incentive to collect the data. However, analyzing the data collected can provide insights into patient outcomes and help improve care quality and coordination. (Becker’s Hospital Reviewreport)
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In Case You Missed It!

SEE THE EVIDENCE | The Outcomes of Implementing and Integrating Comprehensive Medication Management in Team-Based Care: A Review of the Evidence on Quality, Access and Costs
Learn about the peer-reviewed evidence showcasing the value of CMM, through improvements in access to care, provider work life, outcomes and patient satisfaction as well as a reduction in costs. These findings, updated in December 2021, outline the CMM team-based care process that can be implemented in a variety of health care systems to ensure positive patient outcomes.
GTMRx Membership Spotlight | Shawn McFarland, , Pharm.D., FCCP, BCACP
This month, we would like to recognize Shawn McFarland from the Veterans Health Administration. He is the co-lead of the Evidence-Based Resources Subgroup of the Practice and Care Delivery Transformation Workgroup and co-author of two important papers: “Assessing the Impact of Comprehensive Medication Management on Achievement of the Quadruple Aim Review” and “Medication Optimization: Integration of Comprehensive Medication Management into Practice.
The GTMRx Institute is comprised of over 1500 members, many of whom are champions in the world of CMM. They lead our workgroups, serve on our taskforces, publish CMM evidence and research, and guide and support our work. Our members are crucial to the work we do to advocate for a better medication management system. As a thank you, we will be starting a new membership shoutout series to highlight members and their many accomplishments. So on behalf of the Institute and those who benefit from CMM, thank you Shawn!
Advocacy in Action

GTMRx is pleased to announce that we have launched our Advocacy Letters and Policy Documents page on the GTMRx website. Advocacy is a core component of the GTMRx Institute’s mission, and our policy positions are aimed at advancing acceptance and recognition of the importance of creating a systematic, evidence-based approach to medications and their rational use through CMM in practice. To advance our efforts, comments are submitted to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), members of Congress, the Administration, and other public sector payers (OPM) as appropriate.

Join us to be part of meaningful change
Irma, like many others, struggles as a result of our current trial-and-error approach to medication. That is why we advocate for a new, comprehensive approach to medication use and prescribing. As a non-profit 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) organization, the GTMRx Institute and Foundation relies on funding from our supporting members. We ask that you consider becoming a Supporting Signing Member so we can continue to provide relevant, timely resources to get the medications right!
If you’re interested in supporting the Institute or Foundation at a higher level, please contact us. Your dollars will bring about meaningful change for people like Irma.

Become a Supporting Member Today

AmazonSmile is an easy way for 0.5% of your qualified purchases go to the GTMRx Foundation at no cost to you. And signing up is simple—go to and select “Get the Medications Right Foundation” as your charity of choice. If you prefer to directly donate instead, you can do so here.
Adding the foundation on AmazonSmile will help us continue to provide no cost educational webinars, issue briefs, weekly news briefs and promote the need for transformation of our current system of medication use through social media campaigns.
The GTMRx Institute is supported by our Founding Funders, Executive Members and Strategic Partners.
  See past issues of our weekly news brief here

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