January 22, 2019
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Hospital Purchase of Retail Pharmacy to Benefit Patients

Community Author: Joanne Fortin
Post Date:
Joanne Fortin | BDN
Joanne Fortin | BDN

FORT KENT — Peter Sirois, President and Chief Executive Officer at Northern Maine Medical Center, announced the purchase of MADRx, a retail pharmacy located in Madawaska.

Sirois said, “The purchase of a retail pharmacy aligns with our philosophy of patient-centered care. Acquiring the retail pharmacy will allow us as a healthcare provider to close the loop and integrate the inpatient hospital experience with the outpatient services.” According to an article in the Pharmacy Times, more health systems are opening retail pharmacies to improve medication adherence and patient care after discharge, resulting in the reduction of costly hospital readmissions and better patient outcomes.

Scott Richards, RPh, NMMC Pharmacy Director said, “Having this opportunity to close the loop for our patients is a goal that every pharmacist would love to have.

The service we will provide for our patients is unique. We will have access to patient records, lab work, hospital medications, discharge medications and original home medications. With this information we will be able to properly reconcile the patient’s medications when they leave the hospital and reduce the risk of duplicate or missing medications.” Richards said this is important because it supports patient safety by adding more levels of support for patients to understand and adhere to their medication regimen.

Beyond simply providing a prescription service, NMMC plans to provide the community with a boutique service, offering professional education to support wellness and disease prevention. These services will be instituted once the renovations to the building have been completed. Richards said, “We have knowledgeable professionals on site at the hospital –social workers, financial counselors, nurses, and so many other clinicians who can share their expertise to assist patients with various aspects of health management and disease prevention.” In the future, NMMC also plans to fill and deliver prescriptions for patients prior to their discharge from the hospital, saving them from the inconvenience of going to a pharmacy on the way home from the hospital when most patients simply want to get home. According to Hospitals and Health Networks, a big reason for a retail pharmacy strategy is to ensure that patients leaving the hospital fill their prescriptions and understand how to take the medications. Nationally, studies shows an average of twenty percent of prescriptions go unfilled. Of those that do get filled, only about fifty percent of patients take their medicines as prescribed, sometimes leading to hospital readmissions and worsening conditions.
The transition of ownership for the pharmacy will occur between May 11 and14. Hours of operation will not be interrupted during the transition phase. For more information, go to www.nmmc.org and visit the Services tab.

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