Why Patients Today Need More Thoughtful Pharmacy Counsel

Aug 6, 2015
At Express Scripts, we practice pharmacy differently, and as a result, step in to fill a widening gap of care within the healthcare system.

By and large, doctors chose to be doctors because they want to take care of patients. That’s why I became a doctor.

However, my time as a primary care physician made it crystal clear that doctors are under severe time constraints. We need to rely heavily on supporting healthcare providers – like other doctors, nurses and pharmacists – to take care of patients.

Even the most experienced, compassionate physicians need a support structure that better coordinates care for their patients, and gives the physicians better visibility into all the medical touch points for each patient.

A Unique Position in Healthcare

As a practicing physician, I could positively affect the care of a couple hundred patients a year. But with Express Scripts’ 85 million members, however, I can now help that many patients every day.

Specialist pharmacists in our Therapeutic Resource Centers® (TRC) better connect physicians and patients and work to close existing gaps in care. Across Accredo and Express Scripts, we have created 20 different specializations for both traditional and specialty conditions.

When we apply the concept of a specialty pharmacy across traditional therapies, the impact is huge. While most patients with cancer are already seeing oncologists, many traditional, chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, are being treated directly through a primary care physician. Our degree of specialization in these traditional classes provides a critical safety net to the physicians who are seeing many of these patients.

A 12-Minute Healthcare Experience

In addition to specializing in disease areas, our TRC pharmacists spend a lot more time with patients than patients would receive in a traditional retail setting.

Recent data shows that a patient visiting a retail pharmacy – who actively requests to speak with the pharmacist – spends about two minutes discussing that medicine. Our TRC pharmacists, in contrast, spend on average 12 minutes – even longer for specialty cases – talking with our patients from the privacy of their homes. The critical questions we are able to ask during those additional 10 minutes ensures customized advice for each patient.

Improving care for millions of patients: that’s why I’m a doctor at Express Scripts.

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