NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The American Pharmaceutical Association officially unveiled the Concept Pharmacy Learning Center, a hands-on display that highlights ways to improve patient drug therapy programs, at its annual meeting and exhibition.
Created by APhA, Washington, and the National Wholesale Druggists Association, Reston, Va., the 50-square-foot display stresses the importance of pharmaceutical care. It features a multimedia presentation along with a variety of interactive workshop stations and kiosks that show how several pharmacies from around the country have strengthened efforts to provide not only products but services.
"Pharmaceutical care services add value to health care and, as we document that, there is an increasing willingness by payers to compensate pharmacists for providing it," Calvin Knowlton, APhA president, said at the opening session. Total attendance at the meeting, held here March 9 to 13, topped 5,200. The exhibit hall featured a record 200 booths.
Making the transition to pharmaceutical care sometimes involves a major change, such as a facility redesign, or a minor one, like being more available to customers, according to APhA. It also involves disease state management programs, enhanced information systems and improved work flow.
In one area of the exhibit, visitors learn how on-line services such as Health Education Learning and Information Exchange, developed by Glaxo Wellcome, London, and heavily promoted by the National Association of Retail Druggists, Alexandria, Va., are helping pharmacists keep in touch better with the latest pharmaceutical news and trends.
Additionally, visitors are provided with the "APhA-NWDA Guide to Pharmaceutical Care Resources," which lists more than 100 pharmaceutical care products. Food stores have started to execute some of Concept Pharmacy's recommendations. H.E. Butt, San Antonio, for example, last year launched a disease statement management program for patients without Medicaid. The program operates out of a trailer in the parking lot of one of its stores. Additionally, Giant Food, Landover, Md., is offering store tours to diabetic patients.
Concept Pharmacy will be brought to various trade conferences, including the annual NWDA show, Nov. 2 to 5, 1996, in Orlando, Fla., and wholesaler and supplier exhibitions.
Along with Concept Pharmacy, "Positioning Your Practice for Pharmaceutical Care: An Individualized Blue Print for Change," a program used by the American Center for Pharmaceutical Care, Tucson, Ariz., to train pharmacists to re-engineer their practices to provide pharmaceutical care, also was introduced at the show. The course includes 18 modules to help pharmacists create a patient-centered environment. ACPC is an independent entity created by APhA and its affiliated state associations. APhA hopes to have at least 12,000 to 15,000 pharmacy sites practicing pharmaceutical care by 1998.