Patient medication adherence among pharmacies participating in a north carolina enhanced services network

Benjamin Y. Urick, Monali Bhosle, Joel F. Farley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Improving medication adherence can reduce health care spending, and studies have demonstrated community pharmacists can positively affect adherence through the provision of enhanced services. The North Carolina (NC) Community Pharmacy Enhanced Services Network (CPESN) was formed in early 2014 with the goal of enhancing the care provided through its network pharmacies.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate differences in medication adherence performance scores between pharmacies that participated in the NC-CPESN and control pharmacies in NC that did not.

METHODS: Medication adherence performance data for statins, renin-angiotensin system antagonists, oral diabetes medications, and a custom multiple chronic medication measure were gathered from quarterly reports between December 2014 and September 2016. Data for these quarterly reports were derived from NC Medicaid claims. These data were combined with pharmacy demographics and service offerings data from the National Council on Prescription Drug Plans dataQ database. Descriptive statistics were used to evaluate differences in demographics and service offerings between study cohorts. Generalized estimating equations were used to evaluate the relationship between medication adherence and pharmacy cohorts, demographics, and service offerings.

RESULTS: There were 267 enhanced services pharmacies and 1,872 control pharmacies included in this analysis. Enhanced services pharmacies were much more likely to be independent pharmacies, located in rural counties, offer multidose compliance packaging, and offer delivery services, but were less likely to offer 24-hour emergency services. Persistently higher adherences scores were observed for enhanced services pharmacies, with differences across measures ranging from 3.0% to 7.2% ( P < 0.001). In multivariable models, the difference between enhanced services and control pharmacies was explained by differences in offerings of multidose compliance packaging and delivery services, which were associated with 3.4%-8.2% and 3.3%-4.0% improvements in adherence, respectively ( P < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: This study found that enhanced services pharmacies had greater adherence performance scores for the NC Medicaid population. These differences appear to be due to CPESN enhanced services pharmacies' offering of multidose compliance packaging and delivery. Future work is needed to expand this analysis to other populations, as well as to explore the relationship between delivery and adherence.

DISCLOSURES: The project described was supported by Funding Opportunity Number 1C12013003897 from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The contents provided are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS or any of its agencies. Ulrick reports consulting fees from Pharmacy Quality Solutions, unrelated to this work. Bhosle is an employee of Community Care of North Carolina, the not-for-profit company that sponsored the North Carolina enhanced services pharmacy network, and CPESN USA, a for-profit company that developed out of the original grant-funded project. Farley has nothing to disclose.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)718-722
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Managed Care and Specialty Pharmacy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020

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