2014 Award of Excellence: Jeff Schlotter
Rexall Long Term Care Pharmacy #7252, Edmonton
“Find an area you enjoy and be the resource your patients need in that area.”
This is the advice that Jeff Schlotter gives to new pharmacists, and the path he has followed in his own career. As a member of the Jasper Place Continuing Care Centre antipsychotic committee, Jeff created a monitoring tool to help the staff at Jasper Place appropriately evaluate the use of antipsychotic medication among seniors.
His initiative has improved the overall understanding of antipsychotic utilization and how to assess their ongoing usefulness in a structured and meaningful way. Antipsychotics are known to have serious side effects and Jeff has made every effort to ensure his patients are dosed and monitored appropriately.
From Jeff’s point of view as a pharmacist, other members of the healthcare team were not comfortable recommending changes. He envisioned having a method in place where he could empower members of the team to make those recommendations. “Ideally it had to be a tool that everyone could use and understand to be a functional tool for documentation,” adds Jeff.
He created the tool using his advanced training in geriatrics as well as the policy statement Use of Antipsychotic Medications in Nursing Facility Residents from the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists as a baseline guide.
With the new tool and Jeff’s expertise added to the process, the review committee was able to reduce the percentage of antipsychotics used in the absence of psychosis or related conditions from 26.8% to 15.2% in a six-month period (Alberta and Canada average close to 30%). The total dollars spent on antipsychotics was decreased by 39.8% comparing the first five months of 2012 to the first five months of 2013.
The success of Jeff’s project was shared with Alberta Health Services and this led to a new pilot project with the goal of reducing the inappropriate use of antipsychotics province-wide. The tool is also available to all Rexalls across Canada in the long-term care division.Jeff’s innovative project shows that in an interdisciplinary health care team environment, the pharmacist is a key leader in providing safe and effective use of medications and, most importantly, improving patients quality of life.