Pharmacists have a great knowledge about medicine and drug therapy treatments, which is why more and more states are having pharmacists and doctors collaborate to achieve the best outcome for patients. In fact, most states have recently passed new bills, giving pharmacists the authority to collaborate with physicians in regards to patients’ drug treatments. Kansas recently became one of the last states to pass a similar bill with Governor Sam Brownback signing HB 2146 into law, effective July 1, 2014.
This new Kansas collaborative practice law will give pharmacists in the state the ability to collaborate with patients’ doctors to help improve drug therapy outcomes for patients, according to Kansas Pharmacists Association Executive Director Michael Larkin. By adopting this law, several amendments were made to the Kansas Pharmacy Act, including:
- Defining collaborative drug therapy management
- Defining collaborative practice agreement
- Defining practice of pharmacy and physician
- Clarifying prescription refill restrictions
- Creating the Collaborative Drug Therapy Management Advisory Committee
Because the Kansas Pharmacy Act’s “definition of pharmacy was outdated,” Larkin explained that the Kansas Board of Pharmacy “felt it was necessary for the public health, welfare, and safety to codify the current practices, and to clarify that pharmacists in Kansas were trained to provide medication therapy management and that pharmacy is now integrated into the health care infrastructure.”
The goal of this new law is to improve health outcomes for patients. By adopting this law, authorities believe that patients will be better able to manage their health by having more than just a doctor to call on for their drug therapies. With pharmacists’ knowledge of medications and ability to collaborate with physicians, patients should be provided with better medication management and drug therapy outcomes.
While this new law and others like it throughout the United States will create a formal relationship between physicians and pharmacists and help patients make sure they are getting the most effective drug for their health condition, it is important to note that although pharmacists are drug experts, they can make medication mistakes.
If you have been a victim of a pharmacy error, you should order a free copy of our report, How to Make Pharmacies Pay for Injuries Caused by Medication Errors.