Collaboration aimed at improving patient care and reducing health care costs
DEERFIELD, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- In a collaborative model designed to improve patient outcomes and enhance physician decision-making, Walgreens (NYSE: WAG) (NASDAQ: WAG) and Northwestern Memorial Physicians Group (NMPG) of Chicago today announced a new coordinated health care program. Through the program, Walgreens will share with primary care physicians of selected patients the results of appropriately-timed pharmacist clinical interventions.
NMPG is a multi-site practice of primary care physicians who are on the medical staff at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and who also practice at a number of other affiliated locations throughout Chicago, Northbrook and Lake County, IL.
“This relationship is a great example of how health care organizations can work together to improve patient care while also benefitting our health care system at large,” said Kermit Crawford, Walgreens president of pharmacy, health and wellness. “We’ve already seen cases that speak to the effectiveness of the program and further demonstrate the important role our expansive network of pharmacists can play in the future of health care delivery.”
The program is being implemented for Walgreens and Northwestern Memorial employees who have NMPG as their primary care provider, and currently focuses on those with hypertension, diabetes, asthma and hyperlipidemia. Patients with these high-cost chronic disease states will receive point-of-care counseling or an intervention as part of the integrated services offered.
Information from interventions will be provided to each patient’s primary care physician, giving physicians access to important clinical information from Walgreens.
“It’s invaluable for our physicians to have a pharmacist as a clinical partner sharing this type of information that can be critical to a patient’s health,” said Daniel Derman, MD, president of NMPG and vice president, Northwestern Memorial. “This benefits those patients tremendously because now there’s a richer conversation with their primary doctor that is supported by the pharmacy documentation. It’s a more complete way of serving patients and it’s particularly rewarding in this instance because those patients are also our employees.”
For each disease state, Walgreens pharmacists and NMPG physicians have collaboratively developed an intervention plan, with sessions comprised of a series of questions designed to maximize adherence and help patients best understand their disease.
“Many of our chronic disease patients tell us they see their pharmacist more often than they do their doctor,” Crawford said. “Giving physicians further insight into patient behaviors and working with them to spend more time talking with patients can help reduce health care costs and, more importantly, improve a patient’s overall health.”
Walgreens (www.walgreens.com) is the nation's largest drugstore chain with fiscal 2010 sales of $67 billion. The company operates 7,714 drugstores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Each day, Walgreens provides nearly 6 million customers the most convenient, multichannel access to consumer goods and services and trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and wellness services and advice in communities across America. Walgreens scope of pharmacy services includes retail, specialty, infusion, medical facility and mail service, along with respiratory services. These services improve health outcomes and lower costs for payers including employers, managed care organizations, health systems, pharmacy benefit managers and the public sector. Take Care Health Systems is a Walgreens subsidiary that is the largest and most comprehensive manager of worksite health centers and in-store convenient care clinics, with more than 700 locations throughout the country.
About Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Northwestern Memorial is one of the country’s premier academic medical center hospitals and is the primary teaching hospital of the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Along with its Prentice Women’s Hospital and Stone Institute of Psychiatry, the hospital comprises 854 beds, 1,603 affiliated physicians and 7,144 employees. Northwestern Memorial is recognized for providing exemplary patient care and state-of-the art advancements in the areas of cardiovascular care; women’s health; oncology; neurology and neurosurgery; solid organ and soft tissue transplants and orthopaedics.
Northwestern Memorial possesses nursing Magnet Status, the nation’s highest recognition for patient care and nursing excellence. It is also listed in 12 clinical specialties in U.S. News & World Report’s 2010 “America’s Best Hospitals” guide and ranks No. 1 in Chicago in the 2010 U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals metro area rankings. For 10 years running, Northwestern Memorial has been rated among the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” guide by Working Mother magazine. The hospital is a recipient of the prestigious National Quality Health Care Award and has been chosen by Chicagoans as the Consumer Choice according to the National Research Corporation’s annual survey for 11 years.
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