News from University of California, Irvine

Pharmacist-involved collaborative model enhances diabetes care, study finds

Patients with type 2 diabetes taking five or more medications who were treated by an interdisciplinary care team improved their glycemic control, quality of life and self-care capabilities, according to a recent study published online in the journal Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. “Diabetes is a significant public health concern, and many people suffer from more than one such chronic disease, such as hypertension,” said co-corresponding author Joyce Yu-Chia Lee, UCI clinical professor of health sciences. “These patients have individual needs that require multifaceted care approaches involving medication management and lifestyle modifications.” Researchers conducted an open-label, multicenter ,randomized control trial that included 264 patients with type 2 diabetes who were taking five or more daily medications. The collaborative care intervention cohort underwent a unique care arrangement in which community pharmacists from retail pharmacies were invited to review patients’ medications directly in the clinic setting with the primary care team, which included physicians, nurses and dieticians. Members of the cohort were then followed up by the community pharmacists regularly from the convenience of their preferred pharmacies with the added flexibility in time. “The results of our evaluation of the clinical and humanistic outcomes of a community pharmacist-involved collaborative care model in diabetes management show that this model can narrow communication gaps between patients and their primary care team and form a safety net for individuals with chronic disease,” Lee said. This study was conducted at the National University of Singapore and supported by the Singapore National Medical Research Council Health Services Research Grant number NCT03531944.