February 4, 2013
Awards will fund three research projects to evaluate patient health outcomes
Arlington, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation today announced three research grant awards designed to evaluate the impact on patient outcomes by the integration of community pharmacy-provided medication management strategies into existing patient-centered care teams, such as medical homes and accountable care organizations (ACOs).
The grants have been awarded to three prestigious academic institutions which have partnered with prominent healthcare entities to conduct each research project. They will each be funded by the NACDS Foundation for a two-year period, and will each be conducted by a physician-led coordinated care team that incorporates community pharmacy as a partner. The awardees are as follows:
- The University of Nebraska Medical Center is partnering with insurer Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska and their medical home, as well as community pharmacy Walgreen Co. to examine the impact of medication management on the health outcomes of patients with hypertension and type-2 diabetes. The project will also utilize the Nebraska Health Information Initiative, a statewide bilateral information exchange. The project will operate for two years in multiple Nebraska communities.
- The North Dakota State University is collaborating with BlueCross BlueShield of North Dakota, and their statewide MediQHome network (medical home), community pharmacy Thrifty White Pharmacy, Prime Therapeutics, and OutcomesMTM to analyze the impact of integrating community pharmacy and advanced medication management strategies within a patient-centered medical home in North Dakota. The project will operate for two years across the state of North Dakota.
- The University of Iowa is partnering with Trinity Pioneer ACO, OutcomesMTM, the Iowa Pharmacy Association, and twenty-five community pharmacies to analyze the impact of integrating community pharmacy and advanced medication management strategies within a HHS Pioneer ACO in central Iowa. The project will operate for two years across eight counties in Iowa.
The implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has created a healthcare environment that promotes collaborative partnerships. According to the National Committee on Quality Assurance (NCQA), there are now more than 5,000 recognized medical homes nationwide, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid cite 250 established ACOs.
Health policy research group NEHI cites that only 50 percent of patients take their medications properly as prescribed by their doctor, which costs the nation more than $290 billion in avoidable health spending annually. Additionally, a recent study suggests that a typical ACO with 10,000 Medicare beneficiaries might be able save up to$1.1 million annually in emergency department and hospital costs alone by improving adherence among patients with diabetes. Greater Adherence to Diabetes Drugs is Linked to Less Hospital Use and Could Save Nearly $5 Billion Annually. Health Affairs, 31, No.8 (2012): 1836-1846.
"Coordinated patient-centered models are promising forums to drive quality and improve patient outcomes while also reducing public health costs," said Kathleen Jaeger, president of the NACDS Foundation. “The primary medical intervention for most patients is medication therapy. Thus, by incorporating medication management strategies into emerging care models, we hope to optimize therapies and evaluate patient outcomes. The NACDS Foundation is delighted that these research grants will contribute to the scientific body of knowledge by testing three innovative medication management approaches in emerging care models.”
The NACDS Foundation released a request for proposals in early 2012 seeking proposals from research and academic institutions active in leading the evolution in healthcare delivery. More than 40 high-caliber proposals were received and reviewed by an independent review committee comprised of experts in the fields of public health, health policy, academic research and industry.
"The NACDS Foundation is committed to advancing patient health through innovative research, education and charitable initiatives that advance and improve patient care through community pharmacy," said Jaeger. "We look forward to seeing the outcomes of this important research and assessing its impact on patient care.”