CCNC clinical directors chose pharmacy as a quality improvement and cost-containment effort that began in fall 2002. Their decision was influenced by the following utilization data:
- Pharmacy costs have had the greatest increase in expenditures for N.C. Medicaid overall and for the Community Care of North Carolina (CCNC) networks.
- Pharmacy expenditures had increased approximately 37% in a 12-month time frame.
- There are a high number of N.C. Medicaid enrollees on eight (8) or more prescriptions each month.
- The pharmacy initiative provides an opportunity to improve quality and reduce costs.
- Polypharmacy (taking an unusually high number of prescription medications) can be a problem, because the more medications a person takes, the greater chance for drug interactions and adverse effects.
Our pharmacists perform comprehensive medication reviews requested by Network physicians and/or Care Managers or identified by population management tools to optimize patients' drug regimens. Our Pharmacy Program is also responsible for coordinating and managing the delivery of education to community pharmacists and medical providers about the CCNC Program and Medicaid pharmacy initiatives.