In Ontario, pharmacists are expected to follow the new enhanced Medscheck program as of Oct 1 2016.  These new changes have many implications to pharmacists like myself where my main responsibility is dedicated to performing Medscheck for our patients.

For those who are unfamiliar with the Medscheck Program, it is one of the first service programs reimbursed by the Ontario Drug Benefit Program for pharmacists to provide a cognitive service to patients that is not product-oriented.  It started with providing a quick review of medications and producing an accurate list of medications to the patient, to doing a comprehensive review of medications and making some recommendations to the physician.  The program has grown into many facets that target different sets of population (e.g. diabetes, long term care facilities, at home etc). However, they have just completed a review of the program and have developed a new Enhanced Medscheck Program, mainly with more specific criteria for reimbursement as well as more documentation requirements.

In my opinion, the purpose of these changes is to ensure the program is offered in ways that meet the goals of the program as well as ensuring the reimbursement is justified.  I agree with many of the proposed changes such as more transparency of the program to the public as well as more consistency in the documentation that is required. I do believe there are pharmacists out there who abuse this program or bill for services that have not be genuinely provided.  But for the majority of us who do provide this service with good intent, and often with great feedback from physicians, nurses and patients, it sucks to change the process and to make time for additional documentation. Really, who needs more paper work?

I guess it is part of the growing pain with adjusting to changes. It is kind of misleading to call it an enhancement because I am not really offering anything different or more, just more damn paper work to do. These changes are aimed at chucking the mud out of the existing program. 

Oh well, let’s embrace this enhancement positively.

 

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