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Research Supports Role for Pharmacists in Patient Care

Pharmacist care linked to improved HbA1c, blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, medication adherence

MONDAY, Sept. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Patient care from pharmacists is associated with improved outcomes in several disease states as well as in issues such as medication adherence, supporting the role of pharmacists as important members of the health care team, according to research published online Aug. 13 in Medical Care.

Marie A. Chisholm-Burns, of the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy in Tucson, and colleagues performed meta-analyses using 298 studies that reported on pharmacist-provided care.

The researchers found that pharmacist interventions or services improved hemoglobin A1c, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and blood pressure compared to comparison groups. The pharmacist-provided care group also had a reduction in the odds of adverse drug events. In addition, the findings favored patient care from pharmacists for medication adherence, patient knowledge, and quality of life related to general health.

"Our findings provide compelling evidence concerning pharmacists' favorable effects on direct patient care and supports pharmacists as key members of the health care team. This seminal collective work may be used to promote stakeholders' understanding, recognition, and use of pharmacists' professional services, thus facilitating the increased utilization of pharmacists as members of the health care team and as direct patient care providers," the authors conclude.

The study was supported by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Foundation.

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