“Quality is the new currency," said Jessica Frank, PharmD, vice president of Quality at OutcomesMTM, a Cardinal Health company providing medication therapy management programs. As part of their work, OutcomesMTM leverages local relationships among pharmacists, patients and prescribers. So Frank knows from experience how important collaboration is for any organization focused on value-based care. “In one of our programs, a cardiologist was trying to get a patient's blood pressure to raise and had no success with three different medications," she recalled. “The patient's pharmacist looked at her regimen one day and noticed that another specialist had written her a prescription for a different medication that could cause low blood pressure as a side effect." The pharmacist consulted both the specialist and the cardiologist and “they were able to get the patient back on track," Frank said.
Frank noted that collaboration has always been critical when it comes to delivering high-quality patient care. But now, with the shifting healthcare reimbursement landscape pushing organizations in the direction of better value, care coordination and mutually beneficial partnerships are on the rise.
“The fact is that hospitals and health systems and providers of all kinds are now all measured according to their ability to improve quality of care while lowering costs," Frank said. "They can try to do that on their own, but I think it's pretty clear there are easier ways to go about it."