What is Medication Therapy Management?

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For decades health care professionals have been trying to determine the best way to manage patients' medications...with patients seeing multiple physicians and using multiple pharmacies it has become increasingly difficult for health care professionals to grasp the full scope of patients' medication regimens...compounding the issue, thousands of new prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, herbal agents and supplements have hit the market over the years and added to the complexity of medication regimens...with that said it seems more imperative than ever for health care professionals to ascertain a complete patient medication profile to better improve patients' therapeutic outcomes...so is Medication Therapy Management (MTM) the answer?

What is MTM?

MTM is a service that organizes and optimizes patients' medication regimens.

What is the goal of MTM?

The goal of MTM is to improve patients' therapeutic outcomes.

What is a therapeutic outcome?

A therapeutic outcome is the cumulative result and/or effect of therapeutic treatment. Ideally, a therapeutic outcome should be beneficial to the patient.

What patient population is MTM designed for?

MTM is designed for patients on complex medication regimens, for example medication regimens consisting of eight or more medications.

Who carries out MTM?

Health care professionals, including pharmacists, carry out MTM.

How do health care professionals engage patients during MTM?

Health care professionals typically meet with patients face-to-face to discuss and review their medications.

What are the elements of MTM?

There are five core elements of MTM:

Medication review - A health care professional will review ALL medications with patients including over-the-counter medications, herbal agents and supplements.

Assess medication-related problems - A health care professional will discuss and evaluate any patient medication-related concerns...for example, a health care professional will determine if a patient is experiencing any medication side-effects.

Provide a personal medication record (PMR) - A health care professional will provide the patient with a comprehensive list of ALL their medications.

Compile a medication-related action plan (MAP) - A health care professional will provide a MAP to track patient progress and self-management.

Identify interventions - A health care professional will identify medication-related problems and establish appropriate interventions for resolution. In other words, a health care professional will determine if there are any patient issues that need further review.

Who will pay for MTM?

There are many different models outlining MTM reimbursement and the issue is currently under debate...however, in the United States of America the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 requires Medicare Part D prescription drug plans to cover MTM.

How is MTM going to impact health care professionals?

MTM possesses the potential to dramatically alter the health care landscape and redefine health care professionals' roles. MTM will also directly affect pharmacists...greatly expanding their overall impact in patients' therapeutic outcomes.

How is MTM going to impact patients?

MTM can only help patients and improve their therapeutic outcomes. The more information health care professionals have about their patients' medications and overall health, the better they can adjust their treatments and fulfill patients' needs, optimizing therapeutic outcomes

About the Author

Marc Macera, PharmD, RPh's picture

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