Friday, January 27, 2006

Pharmacists' home visits help patients with meds

From the Vancouver Sun:
Throughout the Fraser Health region, pharmacists are visiting recently discharged hospital patients in their homes, where the health professionals are given permission to peek into medicine cabinets and kitchen cupboards to ensure the patients don't wind up back in hospital because of some medication error.

The innovative program is the only one of its kind in Canada and early results, based on a pilot project in White Rock, indicate that for members of the target group who get the home visits -- seniors prescribed more than six medications -- there are fewer hospital re-admissions and shorter hospital stays when there is a readmission. The University of B.C.-sponsored pilot project also showed that seniors made fewer trips to the emergency department after a pharmacist paid them a home visit. ...more

I think this is an excellent example of how pharmacists can improve patients' health, work in a challenging clinical environment, and save the system money. Hopefully the results of this program will spawn further developments.

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