quinta-feira, 13 de março de 2008

Farmacêuticos e Doenças Crônicas: um bom debate

Uma proposta polêmica que está na agenda da ANVISA, mas que deve e necessita ser avaliada com o cuidado devido: farmacêuticos no controle de doenças crônicas. Podem ser um braço da Big Pharma ou um poderoso agente de saúde pública. Abaixo, post do The Wall Street Journal sobre diabetes e o acompanhamento em farmácias americanas.
Diabetes care is a poster child for much of what’s wrong with our health-care system, which is good at handling acute crises but bad at preventing them. Pharmacists are angling to step into the breach and improve preventive care for diabetics. In a project described in the March/April Journal of the American Pharmacists Association, employers in 10 U.S. cities agreed to waive copays for employees’ diabetes meds, and to fund regular meetings between pharmacists and diabetic employees. A year after the project launched, 914 patients who had been enrolled for at least three months saw their hemoglobin A1C, a key measure of health for diabetics, fall on average to 7.2% from 7.6%, a significant improvement. “The pharmacist is really helping people stay on track, just like a coach would for whatever skill you want to choose,” said William Ellis, CEO of the American Pharmacists Association foundation. Patients typically meet with pharmacists once every few months, Ellis said. Costs vary, but a 30-minute session usually runs somewhere between $60 and $90, Ellis said. GlaxoSmithKline paid for the foundation to conduct the study. A similar project in Asheville, N.C., a few years back suggested that employers save money in the long run, because improving diabetics’ health on the front end cuts the rate of expensive hospital procedures that are more common when diabetes is poorly controlled. Ellis said an economic analysis of the 10-city project is expected later this year.

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