Pharmacists help teams improve BP control

May 22, 2012

Pharmacists included in team-based care improve blood-pressure control for patients, according to new recommendations from the Community Preventive Services Task Force.

Pharmacists included in team-based care improve blood-pressure control for patients, according to new recommendations from the Community Preventive Services Task Force.

The task force recommended teams of nurses, pharmacists, dietitians, social workers, and community health workers to complement the primary-care provider’s work. 

“When pharmacists were added to the teams, the median improvement in the proportion of patients with controlled blood pressure was considerably higher than the overall median increase for this outcome,” the report from the task force stated.

The task force found that healthcare team members complement the role of primary providers by providing medication management, providing patient follow-ups, and helping patients adhere to blood-pressure control plans.

The team-care model “improves blood-pressure control on the basis of strong evidence of effectiveness in improving the proportion of patients with controlled blood pressure and in reducing systolic and diastolic blood pressure,” according to a statement from the task force.

The task force evaluated 77 studies of team-based care, organized primarily with nurses and pharmacists working in collaboration with primary-care providers.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) praised the recommendations.

“Community pharmacists counsel patients on taking medications as directed by their physicians, administer flu shots and other vaccines to help patients stay healthy, and they provide a number of other services such as preventive health screenings – including blood pressure testing,” said NACDS President and CEO Steven C. Anderson.