Innovative Program Expands the Patient Care Benefits of Bassett's Ambulatory Intensive Pharmacotherapeutic Program

Bassett Healthcare Network is expanding a program that began in 2016 to provide comprehensive medication reviews for patients in the outpatient setting. The intervention team has grown from a single clinical pharmacist, to a team of three clinical pharmacy specialists with full time analytical support.

The Ambulatory Intensive Pharmacotherapeutics (AIP) program originated in 2016 as an in-house project to benefit Bassett employees insured under the Bassett PPO plan. Goals were to reduce medication-related adverse events, reduce avoidable hospital admissions and emergency department (ED) visits, and lower pharmacy costs for both the patient and the hospital.

"This program grew out of an idea that we can improve the health of our employee population and achieve a more effective spend of our health care dollars. The Bassett Health Plan spends $10 million dollars each year to provide the pharmacy benefit to our employees and their dependents," explains Leonard Lindenmuth, network vice president of Strategy and Population Health. "The AIP program was very successful in saving health plan members both money and harm from potential drug interactions, so the next logical step was to expand it. We shared this idea and our impressive metrics with our biggest insurer, Excellus Blue Cross/Blue Shield, and are now working with them as part of our Accountable Cost and Quality Agreement (ACQA), to improve the care of a larger number of people."

Patients who may benefit from an AIP pharmacist review are identified through a variety of ways – including practitioner referrals and predictive analytics. "When patients are identified, we perform a comprehensive review of their medical history and medications, and provide evidenced-based recommendations to assist providers in optimizing the patient’s overall health," explains clinical pharmacy specialist Temitope Awofeso, PharmD, BCPS. "The work is very rewarding. Not only do we work with practitioners to identify medication-related issues, we also identify potential barriers to effective medical care, and work with Bassett’s network community health navigators and care managers to address them. So, patients are able to get the care they need. It is a winning formula for the patient, care team, and organization."

Although the program is focused on the Excellus ACQA population, the team is also available to review and consult on any Bassett patient. Providers can send referrals to the AIP team via an EPIC staff message to the "AIP Team Review" pool.​

topics in this article COVID-19 Resources