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Practice Transformation

A telehealth platform that includes clinical feedback can help care providers reduce inappropriate antibiotic prescribing rates, according to research published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. Physicians who, in real time, saw their prescribing rates compared to the practice-wide rates, reduced their antibiotic prescription rates. All the doctors in the study had received education on antibiotic resistance. The conclusion: “Education plus individualized feedback in a telemedicine practice significantly decreased antibiotic prescription rates for upper respiratory tract infections and bronchitis, compared with education alone.” (mHealth IntelligenceJournal of General Internal Medicine)
The percentage of older adults who had ever participated in a telehealth visit rose from 4% in May 2019 to 30% in June 2020, according to the University of Michigan National Poll on Healthy Aging. However, these patients still considered in-office visits more effective. HealthLeaders Media provides an overview of the report outlining risks (e.g., a lack of technological expertise among many older Americans) and opportunities (e.g., respondents found the telehealth visit easy). (HealthLeaders MediaUniversity of Michigan National Poll on Healthy Aging)

Evidence & Innovation

Using genetic testing and precision medicine techniques to choose antiplatelet therapies for patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention reduced the chance of heart attack or stroke by 34%, according to research published in JAMA. However, the trial did not meet its primary endpoint–50% reduction. “Although these results fell short … they nevertheless provide a signal that offers support for the benefit of genetically guided therapy, with approximately one-third fewer adverse events in the patients who received genetically guided treatment compared with those who did not,” says Mayo’s Dr. Naveen Pereira, one of the authors. (HealthIT AnalyticsJAMAannouncement)
It’s time for the industry–especially clinical pharmacists–to step up. That’s one of the messages of a recent paper by Amanda Brummel, PharmD, BCACP, and Todd Sorensen, PharmD, in The Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy. They begin with a 20-year overview of Fairview Health System’s medication management program–which is committed to comprehensive medication management. They then look at Minnesota and the nation, offering insights for the future. Among them: Success depends on “bold commitments” from providers and payors to invest in CMM, and that future success is tied to systems-level performance-based agreements (e.g., ACOs). They conclude with a call to action to clinical pharmacists. (Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy)

Policy Solutions

If the health care system could gather and publish relevant data on health care prices and outcomes, just as the Securities and Exchange Commission does, “consumers could see which clinicians, hospitals, insurers and others provide the best value,” says Harvard’s Dr. Regina Herzlinger. “The good ones would thrive, and the bad ones would have to either improve or go out of business.” The SEC works well, she argues. “It doesn’t micromanage business processes; it provides transparency on outcomes. It relies on private-sector analysis. It imposes severe penalties for unethical market behavior, and it raises money for its operations with filing fees and fines.” (Bloomberg Opinion)
The Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) and eHealth Initiative and Foundation (eHI) recently released a draft consumer health data privacy framework. Its purpose: Define data in need of protection and the rules and standards needed to protect health information not protected by HIPAA. The standards would move from “outdated” notice-and-consent models, ensure all health information is regulated, and cover all entities that use, disclose or collect consumer health information. CDT and eHI drafted the Consumer Privacy Framework for Health Data with input from health care providers, academia, tech companies and advocacy groups. (Health IT Securitydraft framework)

In Case You Missed It!

The Get the Medications Right Institute (GTMRx) was proud to sponsor the Midwest Business Group on Health conference last week. The Institute recognizes that employers are a huge part in getting the medications right, and its Employer Taskforce is currently hard at work developing an Employer Toolkit.
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.

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