International researchers have established that pharmacists have crucial roles to play in the recovery process of patients with cardiovascular diseases, as they recently discovered that pharmacists-led interventions can improve hypertensive patients’ outcomes.
The scientists in a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, titled: “A cluster-randomised trial of blood-pressure reduction in black barbershops”, found that pharmacists prescribing on systolic blood pressure (SBP) led to reduction in patients with poorly controlled hypertension.
Prof. Martin Schulz, managing director, Department of Medicine, ABDA, Germany, during his presentation at the FIP Virtual 2020, plenary session on Monday said “Patients around the world deserve to receive a full scope pf pharmacists practice, and lack of cardiovascular risk factor control, lack of access to prescribed medication and laboratory testing are major obstacles to this”.
In his paper titled: “Pharmacists –led interventions to improve outcome of patients with cardiovascular diseases”, he noted the areas of pharmacists interventions to include: pharmacist assessment of BP, CV risk, patient education, prescribing, lab monitoring, and monthly follow-up”.
Schulz explained other dynamics of the study as he mentioned that the research was conducted in 23 pharmacies in Alberta, with 248 patients with BP> 140/90 or 130/80 mmHg, under the usual care of a pharmacist and physician.
He buttressed his presentation with another study on the essential functions of pharmacists in medication adherence, which found that patients receiving pharmacist-led interventions were associated with a statically significant reduction in their systolic.
The study titled: “Medication adherence and persistence according to different antihypertensive drug classes: A retrospective cohort study of 255,500 patients”, published in the International Journal of Cardiology found that pharmacists-led interventions were reported to have a significant positive impact on medication adherence.
The research led by Schulz, himself, had other team members including, Katrin Krueger, Katrin Schuessel; Kristina Friedland; Ulrich Laufs; Walter E.Mueller; and Miriam Ude.
Another key factor established by the study was that pharmacy-based interventions are cost-effective for CVD prevention.
Earlier in the presentation, Schulz defined cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death globally, with the World Health Organisation WHO statistics showing that 17. 9 million people die annually from CVDs. That is approximately 31% of all death worldwide.
He said hypertension and dyslipidaemia are the most common risk factors for CVDs.
Schulz explained that coronary heart disease and heart failure are by far the most common CVDs associated with compromised health-related quality of life, high morbidity and mortality.