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APhA CEO Blog

CDC recognizes growing need for physician–pharmacist partnerships

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May 15, 2017

For the last several years, I’ve been encouraging pharmacists to walk across the street and have a conversation with the physicians whose patients you see regularly. Have a conversation with them about how you can work together for better patient care. Often, especially with MACRA and other quality-based payment systems evolving, you might be surprised to hear a positive response.

Well, now we have a tool to help you! 

Have you heard about Creating Community–Clinical Linkages Between Community Pharmacists and Physicians: A Pharmacy Guide? It was developed by CDC’s Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention in collaboration with APhA and the American Medical Association (AMA), and I encourage you to take a look.

We believe this practical and robust guide can start a conversation about the value of the community–clinical partnerships and the need for sustainable payment models for pharmacists in any practice setting.

The practical resource offers up the LINKAGE Framework—a series of steps to developing “linkage” between pharmacists and physicians caring for patients with chronic disease, each with specific action items. For example, the first step is for pharmacists to identify where their services can address their community’s unmet needs and to determine whether their state allows collaborative practice agreements with physicians. There are also action steps for physicians and for both pharmacists and physicians to do together.

I think pharmacists in any practice setting will get a lot out of the guide. This recognition from CDC is a good step forward.