Friday, November 16, 2007

New Type of Medical Service

After the Thanksgiving holiday the Free Clinic will enter into a completely new and unprecedented venture with our friends at Kaiser. Beginning in two weeks, a resident pharmacist will see patients at the Free Clinic. Sound unusual? Well it is.

A resident pharmacist can see patients under the same types of protocols as a nurse practitioner or physicians assistant. The specially trained pharmacist, under the direct supervision of specifically credentialed pharmacist, can meet with a patient, monitor their medications, order follow-up lab tests and change the dosage or even the type of medication being administered.

The way it will work is a patient must first be seen by a physician for something like high cholesterol, diabetes or hypertension. The physician will order lab tests and prescribe a treatment plan for the patient. Then the resident pharmacist will meet with the patient to follow-up their progress and modify the patient’s treatment as it relates to their diagnosed illness. This is a brand new type of healthcare service and although common to some Kaiser patients, it will be among the first times this type of service is offered in a community clinic setting in California.

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