How often do you conduct counseling sessions with your patients regarding their medications?
Chances are pharmacists at national chains don’t have much time to talk with their patients in person or know them by name. If a patient hasn’t spoken one-on-one with their pharmacist regarding their medication, they’re more likely to discontinue its use because they are unaware of how it may improve their condition.
Depending on the condition at hand, this could be a possible hazard to their health, and affect them negatively in the long run. This is what medication adherence is all about– patients refilling their prescriptions repeatedly in order to improve their health and well-being.
If you are a pharmacist at an independent pharmacy, you probably know the faces of many of your patients and have spoken with them on a personal level and chances are, you are the owner of the pharmacy in which you work.
If a patient knows their pharmacist personally, they are more likely to want to speak to them and have them address questions regarding their medications. As a result, your patient will more than likely keep refilling their prescription, and that will provide both medication adherence and better business for the pharmacy itself.
According to a recent study by Walgreens involving patients with high cholesterol, having at least two face-to-face pharmacist to patient counseling sessions will not only help to improve medication adherence, but will also improve patients’ health and may help avoid unnecessary hospital visits and health care costs. The study also addressed what factors may contribute to non-adherence when it comes to medications- which include perception of the value of therapy, fear of side effects, and difficulty in establishing a routine when taking the medication.
Face-to-face counseling sessions with your patients will help address all of these issues, as well as make them feel more comfortable taking the medication. Getting to know your patients on a personal level will also make them feel more comfortable and keep them coming back to your pharmacy every time.