Role of the Ambulatory Care Pharmacist
Medication therapy management (MTM) refers to a comprehensive review of a patient's medications by a pharmacist. MTM includes: education and identification of medication-related problems including; drug interactions, inappropriate medication usage, medication non-adherence and adverse effects. The Ambulatory Care Pharmacist within the Elliot Physician Network (EPN) meets with patients one-on-one for MTM consults, disease state education and management consults, and medication adherence interventions. The Ambulatory Care Pharmacist also provides clinical support to the anticoagulation clinics and offers drug information support to the clinical staff of the EPN. The Ambulatory Care Pharmacist is involved in several quality initiatives throughout the organization.
Role of the Anticoagulation Nurses
The Elliot Anticoagulation Clinics ("Coumadin Clinics") are staffed by anticoagulation nurses who are certified in anticoagulation therapy management. These nurses work collaboratively with physicians to manage their patient's anticoagulation therapy effectively. The nurses perform point-of-care finger-stick testing of the prothrombin time (PT/INR) and adjust medication dosages based on the results of the PT/INR test. The results are automatically uploaded into the patient's electronic medical record where the physician or specialist can view them at anytime. The nurses provide ongoing education to their patients regarding anticoagulation therapy, monitoring, drug interactions, dietary interactions and adverse effects.
Role of the Central Pharmacist
Our central pharmacy is open 24 hours a day each day of the year. Pharmacists in the central pharmacy assist the decentralized pharmacists each day to provide the correct medication and dose at the right time. With a majority of scheduled medications being dispensed from the central pharmacy, attention to detail and the ability to prioritize and to work as a team member are of the utmost importance. As all pharmacists rotate through both centralized and decentralized roles, each team member will have a working knowledge of USP 797 requirements, hazardous drug handling, non-sterile compounding and the support of automated dispensing machines.
Role of the Decentralized Pharmacist
Decentralized practice allows the pharmacist to be at the point of patient care and interact with patients, their families and the entire healthcare team. Pharmacists are involved in many clinical activities, therapeutic interchanges, quality compliance programs and the overall provision of safe medication use. These activities include: order verification, patient medication interviews, therapeutic drug monitoring and patient care rounds.
For the past 8 years, Elliot Hospital Pharmacy has had pharmacists working centrally and decentrally. As this model has evolved, pharmacists have increased visibility by both our patients and healthcare team members. This environment facilitates teamwork and optimal communication methods.
Role of Pharmacy Technician
Pharmacy technicians are essential team members in every setting and assist the pharmacists in providing patient care. Every technician can provide medication error prevention by reporting prevented and actual medication related errors.
Responsibilities of the Pharmacy Technician
Working with the pharmacists, central technicians make iv fluids, prepare iv syringes and oral liquids, pull medications with pending orders, fill the AcuDose machines and package medications for unit doses.