The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio -- Helping Patients Access Medications through a Partnership of Caring and Education

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Date

2018-04

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Ohio State University. Office of Outreach and Engagement

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Abstract

More than 30 percent of patients in Franklin County live at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Many of these patients lack health and prescription medication insurance. The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio (CPCO) functions to provide medications and pharmacy services to uninsured and underinsured individuals living in Franklin County. CPCO serves more than 700 unique patients per month, and provides medications that patients otherwise could not afford. Pharmacists and pharmacy students counsel about the medications, check patients' blood pressure and glucose, and provide education about chronic disease management. The partner-ship between CPCO and the Ohio State College of Pharmacy uniquely positions pharmacy students, residents, and faculty to serve patients through direct patient care and practice-based research. Learn about the practice model at CPCO and the education and research initiatives that have flourished from this unique partnership.

Description

According to the Ohio Poverty Report – 2017, approximately 35 percent of people in Franklin County live at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Many of these patients lack health insurance and cannot afford the medications prescribed to treat their chronic health conditions. The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio (CPCO) functions to provide medications and pharmacy services to uninsured and underinsured individuals living in Franklin County. Since opening in February 2010, CPCO has provided 330,000 prescriptions for a medication value of more than $27 million. CPCO serves more than 700 unique patients per month, and provides both acute and chronic medications that patients otherwise could not afford. In addition to medications and counseling, pharmacists and pharmacy students at CPCO check patients' blood pressure and blood glucose, provide patient education about chronic disease management, administer immunizations, and counsel patients about healthy behaviors. The partnership between CPCO and the Ohio State College of Pharmacy uniquely positions pharmacy students, residents and faculty to help serve patients through direct patient care and practice-based research. Pharmacy students learn from practitioner preceptors to care for vulnerable patients in the community and discover ways to improve patients' access to their needed medications. Pharmacy residents fine-tune their practice management skills, precept students who are caring for patients, and conduct a research project that can inform best practices associated with providing medications and pharmacy care to vulnerable patients in the community. The shared faculty member and pharmacists guide the students' and residents' learning through modeling and precepting patient care encounters, providing feedback about patient case presentations, discussing timely therapeutic and medication-related topics, and mentoring research that leads to optimal care for the patients. Health care professionals, social workers and community-engaged volunteers would benefit from hearing about the services being provided at CPCO. Dr. Kristin Casper has been a pharmacist, faculty member and preceptor for the past 20 years, and she has served as shared faculty practitioner at CPCO for more than three years. She brings experience in pharmacy education, community pharmacy practice management, and pharmacy practice-based research. Jennifer Seifert, executive director and clinical pharmacist at CPCO, has been a community pharmacist for more than 20 years, and she has been at Charitable Pharmacy since its opening. She brings pharmacy education experience as both an instructor and preceptor, as well as practical experience working with underserved patients in their quest for consistent medication access. This program will provide information about the practice model at CPCO as well as highlight the education and research initiatives that have flourished from the partnership with the College of Pharmacy.
AUTHOR AFFILIATION: Kristin Casper, Associate Professor and Shared Faculty Practitioner, College of Pharmacy, casper.17@osu.edu (Corresponding Author); Jennifer Seifert, Executive Director, Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio.

Keywords

pharmacy, underserved, medication access, patient care, education

Citation

Engaged Scholars, v. 6 (2018).