Telepharmacy is a growing health solution, especially at this time when people are concerned with being out among others due to COVID-19.
According to CDC.gov:
Pharmacists who are providing patients with chronic disease management services, medication management services, and other services that do not require face-to-face encounters should make every effort to use telephone, telehealth, or tele-pharmacy strategies.https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/pharmacies.html
State level reforms to allow increased use of telepharmacy services would help address the current crisis and expand access to care after the pandemic subsides.https://reason.org/commentary/the-potential-of-telepharmacy-services-in-times-of-crisis/
Overview of telepharmacy
- Telepharmacy is a broad term that encompasses off-site DUR and prior authorization, remote dispensing, and the use of automated systems.
- Telepharmacy allows remotely located patients to interact with a pharmacist without extensive travel.
- Telepharmacy can save a traditional pharmacy thousands of dollars per year.
- Telepharmacy and telemedicine are a growing concern for states, with over 150 bills or regulations adopted in the last three years dealing with issues around using technology to provide pharmacy services remotely.
- An obvious drawback to telepharmacy is the lack of a pharmacist on-site at all times. While technicians may be supervised remotely, the physical absence of a pharmacist may lead to compliance lapses.
- A second disadvantage to telepharmacy is a lack of direct in-person interaction between the patient and the pharmacist.