Pharmacist Involvement Can Improve Cardiovascular Care

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Pharmacist Involvement Can Improve Cardiovascular Care
Pharmacist Involvement Can Improve Cardiovascular Care

THURSDAY, June 16, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with poorly controlled cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors could improve their prognosis by having pharmacists help manage their care, according to a study published in the June 21 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Pharmacists at 56 pharmacy-based clinics recruited 723 patients at high risk for CVD events, who were randomly assigned to the intervention or usual care. Half of the study participants received medication therapy management in tandem with a pharmacist and half received usual care.

After three months, participants who received intensive services to help them meet treatment targets had a 21 percent lower risk of future CVD events when compared with those who received usual care. Those receiving pharmacists' care lowered their estimated future risk of CVD by more than 5 percent from the beginning of the study to its conclusion three months later. There was little change in risk for those receiving usual care.

Specifically, for participants with hypertension, 28 percent of the control group reached the recommended target, versus 51 percent of the pharmacist-care group. Of patients with diabetes, 25 percent of the control group achieved glycated hemoglobin goals, compared with 42 percent of patients receiving pharmacist care. And significantly more patients receiving pharmacist care reached the target for low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, than those in the control group (56 versus 46 percent). The pharmacist-care group also had a 20 percent greater reduction in smoking compared to the control group.

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