NCPA a Proud Partner of New Million Hearts Initiative


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Alexandria, Va. - September 13, 2011

The National Community Pharmacists Association's (NCPA) President Bob Greenwood issued the following statement in response to the launch of the Million Hearts Initiative, a new public-private partnership announced today by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Dr. Don Berwick, administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Million Hearts Initiative seeks to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes over the next five years by reducing the number of people who need treatment and improving the quality of treatment for those who need it:

"NCPA enthusiastically supports the Million Hearts Initiative and will encourage all 23,000 independent community pharmacies to become involved.

"Many community pharmacists currently offer disease state management programs supporting the Million Hearts goal. These include blood pressure and lipid monitoring, smoking cessation services, and NCPA's new Simplify My Meds adherence program, which provides pharmacists with tools to coordinate a patient's refills to occur on a single day and boost medication adherence.

"Community pharmacists have the expertise and standing with patients to improve the proper use of medication by ensuring patients take their medications as prescribed. Non-adherence to medication costs the health care system as much as $290 billion per year due to patients seeking costlier treatments, such as hospitalization, that could have been avoided through proper medication use. NCPA's new Simplify My Meds program helps tackle the problem of medication non-adherence by reducing the potential for gaps between refills and identifying other possible barriers to adherence.

"Independent community pharmacists are proven resources in increasing adherence to medication and reducing overall health care spending—both of which are extremely positive outcomes. NCPA is eager to do its part to see that this initiative aimed at preventing heart attacks and strokes succeeds."

The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA®) represents the interests of America's community pharmacists, including the owners of more than 23,000 independent community pharmacies, pharmacy franchises, and chains. Together they represent a $93 billion health-care marketplace, have more than 315,000 employees including 62,400 pharmacists, and dispense over 41% of all retail prescriptions. To learn more go to www.ncpanet.org or read NCPA's blog, The Dose, at http://ncpanet.wordpress.com.

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