MTM: Can supermarket pharmacists deliver?

May 8, 2006

Medication therapy management (MTM), an integral part of MedicarePart D, is likely to evolve into a "medication checkup," andsupermarket pharmacies are the perfect places to offer theseservices. So claims Anne Burns, R.Ph., group director of practicedevelopment and research, American Pharmacists Association.

Speaking to attendees of the Food Marketing Institute's Supermarket Pharmacy Conference, held recently in Miami, Fla., Burns emphasized that competitors, including nurses, physicians, and nurse practitioners, are eager to deliver MTM services. To be eligible for MTM, she said, patients must have multiple chronic conditions, take multiple medications, and have drug costs that exceed $4,000 in 2006. "It's up to each [Rx drug] plan to determine within these criteria which patients it will target for MTM. That benefit could vary from one plan to the next. We're hoping for some type of standardization," said Burns.

In November 2005, APhA initiated a telephone survey of Part D plans-440 PDPs and 1,200 Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug plans (MAPDs)-to determine the MTM services they will offer. Preliminary data obtained from one-third of the plans indicate the following:

Finally, Burns said, pharmacists who want to be involved in MTM may want to address these questions:

Finally, Burns offered the following advice for successful MTM in community pharmacy: