Pharmacists Belong In Accountable Care Organizations And Integrated Care Teams
Author: Marie Smith, David W. Bates, Thomas S. Bodenheimer
Effective health care workforce development requires the adoption of team-based care delivery models, in which participating professionals practice at the full extent of their training in pursuit of care quality and cost goals. The proliferation of such new models as medical homes, accountable care organizations, and community-based care teams is creating new opportunities for pharmacists to assume roles and responsibilities commensurate with their capabilities. Some challenges to including pharmacists in team-based care delivery models, including the lack of payment mechanisms that explicitly provide for pharmacist services, have yet to be fully addressed by policy makers and others. Nevertheless, evolving models and strategies reveal a variety of ways to draw on pharmacists’ expertise in such critical areas as medication management for high-risk patients. As Affordable Care Act provisions are implemented, health care workforce projections need to consider the growing number of pharmacists expected to play an increasing role in delivering primary care services.