In clinical practice in Germany, first approaches of interprofessional collaboration between physicians and pharmacists are promising. Such collaborations are usually restricted to special indications or certain activities. Wolf et al. improved medication safety and the quality of therapy in inpatient psychiatric treatment (1). In our experience, such projects work well in daily practice—especially in the inpatient setting—in spite of their novelty. The WestGem Study provided proof of efficacy for a comprehensive outpatient medication management and the transferability of international results to the German healthcare system (2).
We feel that the time has come to finally implement medication management in Germany and take it off the project stage.
Unfortunately, no consensus has been reached so far in this setting. Some medical policy makers focus on certain interests and thus prevent patients from benefiting from these innovative approaches. Furthermore, the legal basis needs to be clarified, while health insurances demonstrate good will.
No responsible healthcare professional who is familiar with current study data will doubt that medication management can realize its full potential only by interprofessional cooperation between physicians, pharmacists, and ideally further healthcare professions. Internationally, long term results have been presented (3). It hence is regrettable that—for example in some projects of the Federal Joint Committee’s innovation fund—other approaches are being preferred, and that projects are dominated by single professions.
Olaf Rose PharmD
Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Dr. rer. medic. Juliane Köberlein-Neu
Bergisches Kompetenzzentrum für Gesundheitsökonomik
Fakultät für Wirtschaftswissenschaft
Bergische Universität Wuppertal
Conflict of interest statement
Pharm D Rose has received conference delegate fees, travel expenses, and accommodation costs, as well as honoraria for preparing scientific continuing medical educational events, from Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Medac, MSD, and Omnicell.
Prof. Köberlein-Neu declares that no conflict of interest exists.
|1.||Wolf C, Pauly A, Mayr A, et al.: Pharmacist-led medication reviews to identify and collaboratively resolve drug-related problems in psychiatry—a controlled, clinical trial. PloS ONE 2015; 10: e0142011 CrossRef|
|2.||Köberlein-Neu J, Mennemann H, Hamacher S, Waltering I, Jaehde U, Schaffert C, Rose O: Interprofessional medication management in patients with multiple morbidities—a cluster-randomized trial (the WestGem study). Dtsch Arztebl Int 2016; 113: 741–8 VOLLTEXT|
|3.||Barnett MJ, Frank J, Wehring H, et al.: Analysis of pharmacist-provided medication therapy management (MTM) services in community pharmacies over 7 years. J Manag Care Pharm 2009; 15: 18–31 CrossRef|