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Practice Transformation

Unlike with other vaccines, talking about the public good won’t convince patients to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Civis Analytics tested five messages with 4,000 respondents. Personal stories proved to be the best motivator. When a respondent hears about a real person who contracted COVID-19 and died, they were 5% more likely than the control group to agree to the vaccine. However, when the message was about making communities healthier for everyone, they were 1% less likely to agree to the vaccine, and there was a 69% probability the message would create a negative backlash. (FiercePharmaCivis)
The pandemic has slowed mergers and acquisitions, but payors continue to forge partnerships with providers. HealthPayer Intelligence recently identified several that occurred in July and August. For example, Oscar Health plans to partner with Holy Cross Health and Memorial Healthcare System on a co-branded Medicare Advantage plan to serve southern Florida. Structurally, it emphasizes coordinated care as well as virtual care through a connected care team and free, unlimited virtual care visits. Aetna and Cleveland Clinic announced their new Aetna Whole Health partnership in early August, creating a joint health plan that includes value-based contracting. (HealthPayer Intelligence)
When hospital patients are discharged to a skilled nursing facility, 70% of patients received a high-dose opioid prescription, according to research published in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety. The risks are often compounded by the fact patients may be taking multiple drugs, are frail or have cognitive impairment, according to co-author Dr. Jon Furuno of Oregon State. “And notably, skilled nursing facility residents are also often undertreated for pain. These results support the complexity and need to optimize opioid prescribing in this patient population.” (Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug SafetyOregon State University announcement)

Evidence & Innovation

When Medscape asked its readers to predict breakthroughs over the next 25 years, the most common responses related to the human genome. They predicted advances in gene therapy to eliminate cancers and other diseases or even improve mental health. They saw leaps in pharmacogenomics, matching drugs to a person’s genetic makeup. Many saw the most potential for immunotherapy, particularly in reprogramming patients’ T cells to attack cancer cells, and in discovering treatments that are more tolerable than radiotherapy and chemotherapy. AI, telehealth and prevention were also common responses. (Medscape)
In phase 3 clinical trials, vosoritide increased growth in children with the most common form of dwarfism (achondroplasia) to nearly the same rate as in children without the condition, according to research published in Lancet. But the drug has also ignited a contentious debate in a community that sees being a “little person” as a unique trait to be celebrated, not a problem to cure, the New York Times reports. (New York TimesThe Lancet)

Policy Solutions

President Trump’s executive order earlier this month aims to reduce the cost of prescription drugs for Medicare enrollees by tying Medicare payments for outpatient and pharmacy drugs to a “most-favored-nation price”—the lowest price offered in other, comparable countries. Stephen Ubl, the chief executive of industry group PhRMA, calls it a “reckless attack on the very companies working around the clock to beat Covid-19.” However, the Wall Street Journal notes that the order “would appear to be of limited immediate effect.” (PoliticoWall Street Journal)

In Case You Missed It!

CMM offers reduced costs, improves access to care, provides better care and enhances provider work life. These results are outlined in “The Outcomes of Implementing and Integrating Comprehensive Medication Management in Team-Based Care: A Review of the Evidence on Quality, Access and Costs,” updated in June 2020. The evidence document was prepared by GTMRx workgroup members, M. Shawn McFarland, PharmD, FCCP, BCACP, national clinical pharmacy practice program manager, clinical practice integration and model advancement, clinical pharmacy practice office, pharmacy benefits management services, Veterans Health Administration; and Marcia Buck, PharmD, FCCP, FPPAG, BCPPS, director, clinical practice advancement, American College of Clinical Pharmacy. (GTMRx Institute)
Hosted by the GTMRx Institute’s executive director and co-founder, Katherine H. Capps, Voices of Change features leaders who have knowledge, experience and ideas to solve this urgent need to get the medications right. Did you miss the most recent episode?
Episodes feature:
  • Liz Fowler, JD, Ph.D., executive vice president for programs, The Commonwealth Fund
  • Amy Gutierrez, Pharm.D.,senior vice president and chief pharmacy officer, Kaiser Permanente
  • Amanda Brummel, PharmD, BCACP, vice president, Clinical Ambulatory Pharmacy Services, Fairview Pharmacy Services
  • Orsula V. Knowlton, PharmD, MBA, president and chief marketing & new business development officer, Tabula Rasa HealthCare
  • Anand Parekh, MD, chief medical advisor, Bipartisan Policy Center
  • Paul Grundy, MD, president, GTMRx; chief transformation officer, Innovaccer
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.
  See past issues of our weekly news brief here

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