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2015 W.L. Boddy Pharmacy Team: Pharmacare Clinical Pharmacist Team

Pharmacare Clinical Pharmacist Team


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Autonomy, access to cutting edge technology, professional development, and having influence in making decisions is what Ryan Stempfle, Pharmacare’s Vice President of Clinical & Pharmacy Strategy, feels makes a great team and great work environment.

This year’s W.L. Boddy Pharmacy Team award recipient is the Pharmacare Clinical Pharmacist Team. Formed in July 2012, this team originated with the implementation of the pharmacy services framework.

The Pharmacare team places an emphasis on working within the full scope of practice. Their strategic initiative is to ensure all pharmacists on the team have additional prescribing authority, authorization to administer drugs by injection, as well as additional training to acquire certificates in disease state management (such as a certified geriatric pharmacist), and additional training to precept pharmacy students. By having the right tools, network and skillsets to do their jobs, their patients benefit. Working in the full scope of practice and becoming educated in specific disease states, the team has pooled their individual knowledge so that patients have access to an extensive knowledge base. The positive patient experience is enhanced further as the team tracks outcomes, and all treatment decisions are aligned to goals of care and clinical practice guidelines. How this benefits the patient is in the numbers from 2014:

  • 92% of every eligible or in-need patient received a CACP/SMMA, where 84% of patients are complex, taking greater than 7 prescriptions on average.
  • 83% of patients were followed up by pharmacists within two weeks of hospital discharge.
  • 110 anticoagulation patients were managed and prescribed on an appropriate frequency with 'INR monitoring to achieve therapeutic range' results.
  • 13% reduction of antipsychotic usage was accomplished within Long Term Care for dementia residents.
  • 5,475 mobile methadone services were provided with witnessed ingestion of therapy, bringing access to care to patients in the community outside of the inner city where triggers for relapse could be reduced.
  • 28 annual wellness fairs were put on by the pharmacist team for patients, and healthcare team members at different Alberta Supportive Living and Long Term Care communities.

"Ultimately our team brings access to care into the community, bringing a full scope of practice to offer timely assessment, intervention, and follow up to improve health outcomes, reduce risks of hospitalization, and enhance quality of life for our patients.” says Ryan.

To support these initiatives, the team has developed their own clinical administration department with a secure IT infrastructure that allows clinical pharmacists to be mobile. They can access and view all patient documents, including the dispensary documents, new prescriptions, hospital discharge orders, past CACP/SMMA/follow-up and adaptation documents in real time to support their data collection, assessment, and care planning. They can also look up Netcare lab values and drug reference tools right at the point of care. All team pharmacists are equipped with a Pharmacare tablet/laptop and have access to disease state management resources within a shared drive.

This infrastructure helps support collaboration and communication, which are the core of this team. Weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly connections are made at different levels to discuss challenging patient cases as well as to evaluate processes, data collection, assessment, planning, and developing follow-up and monitoring parameters to support team learning and continued education. Other agenda items include form development, enhancing clinical training, developing new innovative ways to practice, tracking quality and pharmacy services performance. Every two weeks the clinical management team meets to enhance collaboration , create solutions to challenges, and discuss how to integrate clinical programs into practice such as anticoagulation, smoking cessation, immunization, and mental health medication monitoring.

Ryan believes in the massive power of team work. “Everything that has been successful has been from being a part of a team. Everyone’s input is valued and we are all part of the idea process. He adds, “not only is it a privilege to be part of this team but  also to serve our patients in the community and to provide them with positive health outcomes.”


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