San Diego, CA (October 15, 2012)
Independent community pharmacists helped reduce health care costs by dispensing a record number of lower-cost generic drugs in 2011 and reported more frequent interaction with physicians to promote the appropriate use of generics, according to the 2012 NCPA Digest, sponsored by Cardinal Health. The Digest, a comprehensive survey of the current state of independent community pharmacies, was released today at NCPA's 114th Annual Convention and Trade Exposition.
"The 2012 NCPA Digest, sponsored by Cardinal Health, provides fresh evidence of how trusted, community pharmacists are working with patients and their physicians to improve health outcomes while reducing costs," said NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey, RPh, MBA. "Independent community pharmacists shattered their previous record in frequency of dispensing lower-cost generic drugs by raising the bar even higher in 2011. In addition, these small business health care providers are counseling patients face-to-face on the proper use of and adherence to their prescription drug regimen—making a dent in the estimated $290 billion in health care costs attributed to non-adherence.
"Community pharmacists are working more frequently with physicians and continue to play a vital role in improving health outcomes while reducing costs," Hoey added. "First, the Digest indicates that community pharmacists reached new highs in promoting the appropriate use of lower-cost generic drugs. Second, community pharmacists are increasingly offering physicians more recommendations for prescription drug therapy, including generic substitutes, and these suggestions continue to be accepted by doctors at a very high rate. In addition, these community pillars are disproportionately located in underserved rural and inner-city locations, where they provide a wide range of essential health services. These include immunizations, durable medical equipment, same-day home delivery and formulating customized medication treatments for individual patient needs."
Now in its 80th year, the NCPA Digest provides these noteworthy 2011 findings:
"Cardinal Health is proud to sponsor the NCPA Digest, which provides information that helps retail independent pharmacy owners better understand the industry landscape and baseline their operations amongst their peers," said R.J. Padgitt, Director of Retail Independent Marketing at Cardinal Health. "Our desire is that retail independent pharmacy owners not only analyze the data but more importantly, they take action. In today's environment, it is becoming more important for retail independent pharmacies to compliment all of the services they are known for with those that were traditionally offered by other institutions. Our hope is the NCPA Digest is another tool that encourages retail independent pharmacy owners to think differently about their business."
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. Together they represent an $88.5 billion health care marketplace, dispense nearly 40 percent of all retail prescriptions, and employ 300,000 people, including over 62,000 pharmacists. To learn more go to www.ncpanet.org or read NCPA's blog, The Dose, at http://ncpanet.wordpress.com.
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