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Washington Report: ACCP Board of Regents Approves Position Statement: “Optimizing Specialty Drug Use”

March 14, 2017


National spending on prescription medications has steadily and significantly increased. Although advanced science and technology have led to new therapies with tremendous promise, the associated costs to providers, patients, and payers often limit access to these therapies across the spectrum of health care delivery. Moreover, specialty medications (i.e., medications with a total average cost greater than $1000 per prescription or an average daily cost greater than $33 per day) account for a disproportionate share of these costs.

The "right prescription for the right patient" motto has always reflected one of pharmacists' fundamental commitments to their patients. However, its meaning must evolve to "getting the medications right" for all patients by incorporating a commitment to ensure the right patients are selected for such expensive therapies. Combining comprehensive medication management (CMM) with value-based pricing strategies promises more rational and economical use of specialty medications by optimizing their use for patients and health systems.

In response to this issue, the ACCP Board of Regents approved a new position statement titled "Optimizing Specialty Drug Use" last month in Jacksonville, Florida. This statement expresses ACCP's position on optimal specialty drug use and emphasizes that CMM is necessary to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients and the health care system.

Members are encouraged to review the pre-publication version of the statement and initiate dialogue in their practices about the importance of clinical pharmacists "getting the medications right" in the context of specialty drug use.

Click here to read the statement in full.

For more information on any of ACCP's advocacy efforts, please contact:

Samuel G. Johnson, Pharm.D., FCCP, BCPS
Director, Health Policy and Interprofessional Affairs
American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP)
1455 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20004