The profanity is flowing. Things need to get done.
My first preceptor from my 4th year of pharmacy school, and one who has done so much for pharmacy in New Mexico, lit a fire under my butt this morning. This week, I realized that to get anywhere in pharmacy, to get to that holy grail we speak of that exists already in the VA, we need to change the law. Get this. The Veterans Affairs hospitals and clinics utilize pharmacists beautifully. They are seamlessly integrated into the healthcare team. YET, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) does not recognize pharmacists as healthcare providers for purposes of reimbursement. Does that make sense?
There are plenty of blogs out there telling how pharmacy really is. I think that the public, including MDs, nurses, and anyone who has been to a retail pharmacy, has the view that the retail pharmacist has a pretty job. All they do is count, pour, lick and stick, right? All the while, they keep on smiling and keep their cool. That’s only because we are good at what we do. We keep our cool because if we didn’t, we would go “postal”. That’s also the only pharmacist they see, which is one reason why so many people don’t realize all that pharmacist do, FOR THEM.
Keep in mind that there are pharmacists in the hospital (usually in the basement, where the environment and security for the drugs can be better controlled), and they are also out on the hospital floors, rounding with the healthcare team. We have consultant pharmacists working in clinics, hospitals and long-term care, as well as pharmacists in their own clinics, such as the Diabetes Self-Management (DSM) outpatient sites. There are pharmacists conducting MTM (Medication Therapy Management) both in and out of the community pharmacies. There are home infusion pharmacists, nuclear pharmacists, compounding pharmacists, and of course you have the retail pharmacist.
Where there are drugs involved, there are pharmacists.
I would love to see all of those pharmacists that are ballsy enough to tell it like it is, to push for actual change. Push for reform. Push back. Rally people together and get them fired up. GIVE SOLUTIONS. Be the catalyst for change.
Some prominent blogs: