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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 & Innovation

Incentivize PCPs to participate in clinical trials
It’s time to include more primary care physicians in clinical trials, according to a commentary published in Newsweek. Physicians in academic medical centers play an outsized role in enrolling their patients in clinical trials. This can lead to disparities in access to innovative drugs. “Expanding access to clinical trials information in diverse settings through incentivizing physicians will help community rooted physicians stay up to date on the newest scientific developments, better enable patients to access the most groundbreaking treatments and enable trusted physicians to serve as public health information mediators.” (Newsweek)

CMM’s benefits “without debate”
A piece in the Journal of American Health & Drug Benefits authored by leaders of the Get the Medications Right Institute, articulates the value of comprehensive medication management. Unlike medication therapy management, which traditionally focuses on the disease state, “CMM provided by a pharmacist working with the patient in a team-based care model takes a holistic approach to developing a medication regimen that is individualized, effective, and safe.” They conclude, “The benefits of including CMM in the services provided to primary care patients are without debate. […] It is time for the widespread inclusion of CMM services in healthcare coverage for patient care.” (American Health & Drug Benefits)
Turning mail carriers into health workers
In a recent commentary, Elisabeth Rosenthal, editor-in-chief of Kaiser Health News, proposes allowing mail carriers to conduct home visits and basic health checks on the frail and elderly. “Why not instead redeploy some of the U.S. Postal Service’s vast supply of human resources to deliver a service our aging population — and our country — desperately needs?” It’s being done successfully and profitably in other countries, including France and Japan. She’s not alone: The USPS Office of Inspector General suggested it in March. (Kaiser Health News)

Policy Solutions

What constitutes a religious exemption? It’s complicated
Some city and state workers around the country have already begun to resist workplace vaccination rules on religious grounds. Soon those rules will be the norm in the private sector too. In this audio piece, NPR correspondents Andrea Hsu and Shannon Bond explain what the law says about religious exemptions to vaccine rules in the workplace. (NPR)
More insurers sue Merck over generic delay
Humana and Centene filed separate lawsuits earlier this month claiming Merck’s “pay-for-delay” tactics caused them to overpay for cholesterol medications Vytorin and Zetia by hundreds of millions of dollars. The complaints come just three months after the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan sued Merck, accusing the company of breaking antitrust laws in multiple states by delaying the launch of lower-cost generic drugs. (Modern Healthcare*)
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In Case You Missed It!

The first GTMRx Physician Advisory Taskforce meeting was held on September 30, 2021. The goal of the Physician Advisory Taskforce is to provide leadership guidance and recommendations that will enable broad practice adoption of a systematic approach to medication use (CMM) throughout the continuum of care. This will be achieved by physician advisor evaluation, review and ongoing recommendations. It is chaired by GTMRx President Paul Grundy, MD and GTMRx Board Member Ira Klein, MD. You can find all of the physician advisors who are taking part here.
As a leader in the health care field, your opinion on serious issues facing the field today is crucial to the work we do. We’ve developed a quick five-minute survey to gather feedback on issues in health care and the pharmaceutical world today and where they’re headed; we’d be grateful for your participation.
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.

GTMRx Payment and Policy Recommendations

Leadership from GTMRx’s PGx Payment and Policy Taskforce and Payment and Policy Solutions Workgroup have created 5 policy recommendations on PGx + CMM that policymakers should consider to ensure that patient medications are managed safely and effectively based on the unique characteristic of an individual patients’ genetic profile, including:
  1. Add the assessment of patient medications and drug-gene interactions to Medicare (Welcome to Medicare visit) and Medicaid benefits,
  2. Require CMS to reimburse preemptive multi-gene panel testing as one single test with one standard compensation code,
  3. Require CMS to reimburse members of the care team trained to evaluate/manage all medications based on patient’s genotype, multi-drug interactions, Rx metabolism, etc.,
  4. Direct the National Quality Forum (NQF) to review and make recommendations on drug-gene interaction efficacy and safety checks prior/post admin of drugs within CMM,
  5. Recommend the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force evaluate evidence of PGx testing and CMM, for drugs with known drug-gene interactions, as a preventive health care practice that addresses patient outcomes/medical expenditures and that should be covered by ACA plans.
In addition to development of Vaccine Confidence Leagues (VCLs) and community-building activities, the task force’s recommendations include:
  • Accelerated approval of vaccines
  • Public education
  • Payment reform
  • Improved vaccine access for primary care practices
  • More effective immunization information systems (IIS)
  • No cost-sharing for certain patients
  • Enhanced diversity, inclusion, and equity
Find the report Frequently Asked Questions here.
Read the report here.
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.
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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