Modeling specialty medicine access: Understanding key health system processes and players. Journal Article

Authors: Cocohoba, J; Pohlman, B; Tran, JS; Kirkham, H; Joyce, C; Clark, K; Stebbins, M
Article Title: Modeling specialty medicine access: Understanding key health system processes and players.
Abstract: OBJECTIVES: To map the specialty medicine process from prescription writing to the patient obtaining medication, identify perceived barriers to access, and highlight potential opportunities for improved efficiency as understood from the perspective of 3 key stakeholder groups: specialty disease clinicians, staff members, and specialty pharmacists. DESIGN: Qualitative research study using semi-structured individual interviews. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Interviews were conducted at a single large tertiary care center targeting clinicians and staff in the hepatitis C, oncology, cystic fibrosis, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis clinics. The second set of participants was pharmacists and technicians at specialty community pharmacies within one large retail chain that was not directly affiliated with the health system. RESULTS: Four conceptual models of specialty medicine access were described by participants. These models varied by disease state, available human resources, and medication. Clinics and specialty pharmacies were not fully aware of the others' systems and contributions to the specialty medicine access process. Perceptions of inefficient communication resulted in frustration and higher perceived work burden. CONCLUSION: There is not a single streamlined pathway for clinics and patients to access specialty medicines in health systems that do not own their own specialty pharmacies. The current system architecture can lead to duplicative work, challenges in communication, and other inefficiencies. Future interventions should focus on streamlining communications between specialty pharmacies, clinics, manufacturers, and payors to create the most efficient access to specialty medicines.
Journal Title: Journal of the American Pharmacists Association : JAPhA
ISSN: 1544-3450; 1086-5802
Publisher: American Pharmacists Association(R). Published by Elsevier Inc  
Date Published: 2018