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The Emergency Pharmacist (EPh): A Safety Measure in Emergency Medicine. Part III: Implementation. Prepared by the Emergency Pharmacist Research Team, University of Rochester Department of Emergency Medicine

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the emergency pharmacist eph a safety measure in emergency medicine

The Emergency Pharmacist (EPh): A Safety Measure in Emergency Medicine

Part III: Implementation

Prepared by the Emergency Pharmacist Research Team, University of Rochester Department of Emergency Medicine

Rollin J. (Terry) Fairbanks, Principal Investigator; Karen E. Kolstee, Project Coordinator; Daniel P. Hays, Lead Pharmacist

www.EmergencyPharmacist.org

Supported by The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality,

Partnerships in Patient Safety, Grant no. 1 U18 HS015818

national implementation
National Implementation
  • Nationally, an estimated 3-5% of ED’s have a clinical pharmacist in the ED
  • 30.1% plan to request funding
  • 18.3% have attempted to gain funding for a pharmacist position
    • Funding primarily done through department of pharmacy
  • The demand for an EPh is increasing

Thomasset and Faris, Am J Health-Syst Pharm, Aug 2003; 60

the plan
The Plan

ED’s across the country are in need of dedicated pharmacists – come in with a plan and they will welcome you with open arms…

step i assess individual ed environment
Step I: Assess Individual ED Environment
  • Size of hospital
  • Academic center vs. non-academic
  • Urban vs. rural
  • Patient demographics
  • Number of patients seen
  • Trauma center or not
  • Have a potential EPh candidate shadow medical staff to determine needs and role
step 2 recruitment
Step 2: Recruitment
  • Finding a full time dedicated EPh
    • Education
      • Pharm D.
        • Residency – accredited emergency pharmacist program
        • ACLS, PALS, ATLS certification
        • Preceptor – through central pharmacy
    • Experience
      • Critical/acute care
      • Emergency Medicine
what to look for
What to Look for
  • Characeristics
    • Proactive – continually offer assistance
    • Actively seeking out medical team
    • Build relationships with all medical staff
    • Actively seeking out patients that can benefit from EPh intervention
    • Ability to appear helpful and not confrontational
step 3 overcoming challenges
Step 3: Overcoming Challenges
  • Financial
  • Staff Resistance*
  • National Pharmacist Shortage

* Probably not a problem! See: Fairbanks RJ, Hildebrand JM, Kolstee KE, Schneider SM, Shah MN. Medical and nursing staff value and utilize clinical pharmacists in the Emergency Department.Emergency Medicine Journal (in press).

financial
Financial
  • Important to demonstrate that there is return on investment for the EPh salary
    • EPh will save $$$ in an ED
      • By recommending lower cost medications with equal or better efficacy for particular treatments
      • By reducing adverse drug events
    • 4 month study – 2150 interventions
    • 1393 directly related to ADE’s
    • Cost avoidance of $1,029,776
  • Use existing pharmacists to participate in clinical decision making, even if a full time position is not an option

Lada, P. et al, Am J Health-Syst Pharm, Jan 2007; 61(4)

an office is not necessary
An Office is Not Necessary
  • Provide EPh with necessary equipment in ED (lap top, portable phone, pager, reference guides)

The University of Rochester’s EPh in his “office” in the trauma bay.

staff resistance to eph
Staff Resistance to EPh
  • Minimize the potential for resistance
    • Stress importance of teamwork in order to improve quality of care
    • Differences in opinion should be settled away from patient’s bedside
    • Ensure consistency with Eph services – Reliability
  • Success with EPh at the University of Rochester Medical Center
    • 99% feel EPh improves quality of care
    • 96 % felt EPh was an integral part of ED team
    • 95% indicated they had consulted with EPh at least a few times during last 5 shifts

Hildebrand, JM; et al. Academic Emergency Medicine (In Press)

national shortage of pharmacists
National Shortage of Pharmacists
  • Opportunities for existing pharmacists
    • Participate in clinical decision making
    • Specialty/critical care needs
    • Utilize pharmacist for high risk medications
    • Utilize pharmacist for high risk patients
    • Coverage during identified high volume or peak hours
step 4 creating a national norm
Step 4: Creating a National Norm
  • Increase awareness to encourage hospitals to initiate EPh programs
    • Print and broadcast media
    • ASHP / ACCP involvement
    • National EM/CC society involvement
    • Publications
    • AHRQ and other funding to study program outcomes
    • There is a need for a formal cost analysis study