Data and the Future of the Healthcare Ecosystem
by Elie Khalife, president, KeyCentrix
Data has always been a part of the healthcare ecosystem. Although it’s been collected inconsistently in the past, technology has helped advance the gathering, storing and needs for this data today. For decades healthcare professionals had worked independently to collect and aggregate data, but the calling for advancements in the healthcare industry required better interaction for all of healthcare’s actors including, but not limited to, drug manufacturers, prescribers, pharmacies and patients. Continuous improvements in technology facilitated and promoted this collaboration while providing even better outcomes for the industry and patients alike. These advancements and outcomes in healthcare now grow exponentially, and patient data is the new driving force.
The Need for Data
In 1972, with the distribution of methadone, the first drug was required to have data tracking and controlled distribution from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Now fast forward to 2005, an interesting year for drugs and pharmacies in general, the FDA started to demand more data points from drug manufacturers regarding new drug therapies in clinical trials and maintaining patents for existing blockbuster drugs. In turn, drug manufacturers required more process controls and limited the distribution to a select number of pharmacy locations that were capable of handling the collection of the expected data needed. This started a new trend of limited distribution drugs (LLD’s)
How Software Can Help You Meet Your Independent Specialty Pharmacy Goals
A positive response to Specialty Pharmacy Times’ article, “What Defines an Independent Specialty Pharmacy?” authored by Stephanie Lapointe, PharmD; Cheryl Allen, RPH, BSPharm, MBA; Gary Rice, RPH, MS, MBA, CSP. Full article: http://www.specialtypharmacytimes.com/publications/specialty-pharmacy-times/2016/april-2016/What-Defines-an-Independent-Specialty-Pharmacy
Specialty Pharmacy Times published their article earlier this year, and it inspired us (KeyCentrix) to reflect on points they presented with how pharmacy management software systems can assist in a specialty environment. The information from Specialty Pharmacy Times (SPT) is in bold, followed by the KeyCentrix reflection in regular font.
- “[Specialty pharmacies value innovative service initiatives and partnership resources, allowing a singular focus on specialty pharmacy management by providing patient-centric, high-touch care models individualized to the patient.]” “Independent specialty pharmacies also foster industry collaborations and the development of innovative services and programs that demonstrate both a patient-caring and entrepreneurial business philosophy, [i.e. a simplified, patient-centric workflow model]:” -SPT
Pharmacy software workflows can be configured to enforce the checks & balances needed for specialty prescriptions. The costs of misfiling a specialty drug or not appropriately complying with the REMS reporting requirements are high, which is why a configurable workflow is critical for success in the venture of specialty. Business rules can provide guaranteed exceptions for managing specialty high-cost medications by enforcing that the pharmacy has been appropriately reimbursed, the pharmacy is in compliance with the necessary protocols, or the pharmacy has tracked the necessary steps before the drug can leave the pharmacy.
With business rules, a specialty prescription can be forced to stop prior to the dispensing stage to allow and/or require a patient touchpoint prior to dispensing.