National Pharmacist Day: Celebrating the Backbone of the Healthcare Industry

Where would healthcare be without pharmacists? In celebration of National Pharmacist Day, which was on January 12, it’s important that we highlight the great work pharmacists are doing to help advance the industry and provide quality care for the general population:

Improvement in population health

Over the years, pharmacists have played an integral role in helping manage the outcomes of chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension and hyperlipidemia. Most chronic diseases require long-term medications and high levels of adherence, making pharmacists a key contributor to the successful management of these diseases. To resolve the healthcare workforce shortages taking place across the country, pharmacists have stepped up to fill the gap and provide team-based care.

Combatting the rising cost of drug therapy

Drug prices have been on the rise since 2013 due to new FDA approvals, medication shortages and specialty therapies. The cost-effectiveness of pharmacists coupled with their impact on inpatient healthcare outcomes have helped healthcare teams reduce the average price and length of individuals’ hospital stay. As COVID-19 continues to have a massive impact on hospital pharmacy revenues, pharmacists can help contain costs while performing pharmacotherapeutic consultive services. 

Leading vaccination programming

Since the American Public Health Association identified pharmacists as an underutilized resource in 1981, community pharmacists have been working to administer vaccinations and assist in addressing other public health needs. Each state has expanded the pharmacy scope of practice to include vaccine administration, although details vary from state to state. In addition to administering FDA-approved COVID-19 tests, pharmacists are now allowed to order vaccine

supplies directly from the federal government and provide vaccinations to children above the age of three.

Pharmacists are among the most trusted healthcare professionals and are often accessible when other physician offices are closed. Like your community pharmacists, our team at Community Cares Rx takes your health seriously and wants to make the process of receiving access to your prescription medications easily and affordably. Sign up to receive a prescription discount card today and unlock a number of resources including online price comparison tools and pharmacy locators.

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit www.communitycaresrx.com.

Be the Healthiest Version of You in 2022

2022 is not just a new yearbut a chance to start fresh. Whetheryou want toeat healthier, exercisemorefrequentlyor spendextratime with family and friends, now is the time to startimplementingproactive health measures and makingthis next year your bestoneyet. Here are fourpractices to help ensure you have a happy and healthy 2022:  

Prioritizeself-care 

Allow2022to bethe year that youput yourself first.Read a new book. Meditate more often. Get outside.Self-carehelpsyoucope with dailystressors;it isimportant tofind methods that work for youtoguarantee long-term physical and emotional health.  

Schedule your doctor’s visits 

You should be visiting your primary care provider each yearto receive a physical exam.Beproactive andschedule appointmentswith your dermatologist, eye doctor and dentist. Females shouldalsomeet with their gynecologiston a yearly basis. Getahead of the game andon your doctors’calendar now! 

Make an anti-resolution 

Instead of focusing on what you should be doing in the new year, try identifying what you shouldn’tbe doing.Anti-resolutionssingle outthe self-destructive behaviorsthatmakeyour life more difficult,helping youto becomespecific and smart about howtowork towardsbeingthe best version of yourselfin the future.  

Set your nutrition goals 

Ifyouwant topractice better nutrition and exercise more, tryimplementingsmall changesinto your daily routine to help youbuild and retain consistencyin your health journey.Followinga daily schedule is a greatfirst stepto makingsureyoueat balanced meals every four to five hours, includinghealthy carbohydrates,fatsand lean proteins. In addition,a schedule willencourageyou tofindoptimalperiods in the day for a quick walk, trip to the gym or a stretch break.  

Become a Community Cares Rx prescription discount cardholder today and get access to our online pharmacy locator, price comparison toolsand more in the new year.For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visithttps://www.communitycaresrx.com.

A Year in Recap: Health Advances Paving the Way Toward a Bright Future

The medical industry is continuously evolving, working to perfect the next new treatment or technological innovation that will transform the future of healthcare. While the world was consumed with the latest COVID-19 vaccine and treatment updates, the medical industry has been continuing to break boundaries in other areas. Here are three breakthroughs discovered this year that will continue to change the game in 2022: 

Advancement in Obesity Medication 

Semaglutide, the new obesity medication hitting shelves following the FDA’s approval in June, offers treatment to the 78 million Americans facing the risks of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and other health conditions as a result of carrying excess weight. Semaglutide recipients lost nearly 15% of their body weight on average, proving this new medication is significantly more powerful than other obesity medications.  

 Smarter Pacemakers 

Pacemakers, technology that delivers electrical impulses to heart muscle chambers to prevent heart arrhythmias, are used by over 1 million patients. These devices are remotely monitored using Bluetooth technology. Now, patients are able to use this technology to link their pacemaker to smartphone-based apps that will help them better understand and utilize the devices. In addition, pacemakers have shrunk in size.  

 Universal Hepatitis C Treatment 

Individuals who face hepatitis C, also known as the “silent epidemic,” face a number of serious risks including cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer. While there are drugs available to treat the condition, they have been proven to be ineffective for certain genotypes or come with undesirable side effects. The FDA has approved a fixed-dose combination of drugs that is more than 90% effective in treating hepatitis C genotypes 1 to 6.  

At CommunityCaresRx, we pride ourselves on our ability to stay ahead of the industry curve and provide easy and affordable access to the prescription medications you need for the betterment of your health. For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit https://www.communitycaresrx.com 

 

  

Three Daily Habits to Keep You Active

Busy workdays and weeknight commitments make it a challenge to incorporate exercise into our weekly routine. One in every four Americans gets at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise each week. Here are three ways you can stay active during the day, regardless of your weekly commitments.  

Take short walks   

It’s important to get up from your desk and stretch your legs! A simple stroll to the break room, water fountain or a lap around the office building are all ways to boost your energy and activate your muscles. If you drive to work, try parking further away from the building. Instead of regularly taking the elevator, challenge yourself to take the stairs. Walk to a nearby lunch spot for takeout, rather than relying on a food delivery app. When you walk, try to gradually increase your pace. Speed walking strengthens your muscles, increases your range of motion, and improves overall fitness and endurance.  

Clean your house  

Though cleaning may not be your favorite activity, it keeps you moving. Housecleaning for just 10 minutes can elevate your heart rate and burn about 32 calories. Start washing your dishes by hand instead of using the dishwasher. Gardening and mowing the lawn allow for healthy amounts of time outside to soak up the sun! If you enjoy home improvement projects, then you might consider activities that provide moderate to vigorous amounts of exercise, such as painting, dusting and scrubbing. 

Stand when you can   

Standing uses more muscles than sitting, and it is one of the easiest ways for you to stay moving during the day. Research shows that sitting for extended periods can increase your blood pressure and blood sugar, as well as the amount of body fat surrounding the waist and abdomen. Many individuals and companies are investing in stand-up desks because standing can reduce the risk of weight gain, heart disease and back pain. Furthermore, standing may lower your blood sugar, improve your mood and boost productivity.    

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit https://www.communitycaresrx.com.    

The Best Ways to Keep the Sniffles at Bay: How to Survive the Upcoming Flu Season

Over the past decade, the flu has infected 9 to 41 million people each year. The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat and lungs. People who catch the flu often suffer from a fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, fatigue and more. Here are three ways that you can stay healthy this flu season:

Get the flu shot

One of the best ways to prevent yourself from getting sick is to get the flu vaccine. The vaccine contains deactivated flu viruses that teach your immune system to fight the virus before you come into contact with it. A flu shot will protect you against three to four flu strains and reduce your chance of getting the virus by 40% to 60%. If you catch the flu after getting the shot, the duration of your symptoms will be shorter.

 Wash Your Hands

The flu spreads through contact with droplets emitted when talking, coughing or sneezing. It can live on surfaces for hours. If you touch a door handle and then touch your eyes, nose or mouth, you are putting yourself at risk of infection. Avoid touching your face and wash your hands with soap and water. Make sure to have alcohol-based hand sanitizer available when you are not able to wash your hands.

Eat a Healthy Diet

It’s important to eat nutritious foods from various food groups to help boost your immune system. Fruits and vegetables are a great addition to your plate because they are rich in antioxidants, vitamins, zinc, beta carotene and more. Researchers believe that low levels of vitamin D play a role in increasing seasonal colds, the flu and respiratory infections. The active cultures found in yogurt are a great source of vitamin D.

Prioritize your health this flu season and stay up to date on your prescription medications. For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit https://www.communitycaresrx.com.

What does a Pharmacy Technician do?

Have you ever stopped to think about each of the steps that are required to fill a prescription? In honor of Pharmacy Technician Day on October 19, we are sharing a sneak peek of the role pharmacy technicians play to keep pharmacies running like clockwork - and their increasingly important role in telepharmacy and vaccine distribution.

Daily role of a pharmacy technician

Pharmacy technicians work under the direct supervision of pharmacists to prepare prescriptions and maintain patient records, which includes measuring, counting and labeling prescriptions. They also perform medication inventories, assist with customer service needs and process insurance claims.

How did COVID-19 impact the roles and responsibilities of pharmacy technicians?

Rafael Roman, a pharmacy technician at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, sat down with the American Society of Health System Pharmacists to discuss how his role evolved following the COVID-19 outbreak. Roman and his team began operating under a hybrid work environment, and they also increased time spent on technician recruitment efforts from 23% to 60% in anticipation of a second wave. Most importantly, Roman maintained constant communication with nurses and doctors to maximize efficiency and make sure patients received their medications as quickly as possible.

What role will pharmacy technicians play in the future? The pandemic created space within the pharmacy profession for pharmacy technicians to play a larger role – from helping patients navigate the health care system to addressing health disparities and insufficient social support across patient groups. Prior to the pandemic, pharmacy technicians didn’t frequently give immunizations to patients. However, following approval from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, they now play an important role in the efficient distribution of vaccines.

Our team at Community Cares Rx is fortunate to work with a large network of pharmacy technicians to help patients get the best possible prices on their medications. Become a cardholder today and unlock access to our online pharmacy locator, price comparison tool and other resources.

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit www.communitycaresrx.com.

Health Care Through Your Screen: The Impact of Telepharmacy

As the world works to combat the pandemic, many healthcare service professionals turned to telepharmacy to continue the management of prescription medications. The impact has been worldwide, with the global telepharmacy market expected to reach $71.43 billion by 2027. We’re outlining three benefits of this game-changing healthcare service:

More Emphasis on Patient Care, Less on Logistics

At the onset of the pandemic and implementation of social distancing protocols, hospitals and other healthcare service teams struggled to provide medications to patients in a timely manner. Telepharmacy was an efficient fix to this problem, allowing hospitals to focus less on the logistical elements of patient care. Now, there is an increased focus on developing direct-to-patient and clinical services to provide patient education, monitoring, adherence support and antimicrobial and opioid stewardship programs.

Growth of Digital Applications

Digital pharmacies have been in the works for years, but is now being implemented in even more pharmacy organizations. Mobile health telepharmacy improves medication adherence through the use of smartphone apps and near-field communication (NFC) protocols. These protocols allow mobile devices to communicate using a wireless connection. While video conferencing is the most common tool in telepharmacy, innovative health technologies such as digital pill bottles, ingestible sensors and remote dispensing machines are all key tools in the industry.  

Expanded Hours and Locations

Telepharmacy expands options for advanced clinical offerings, allowing pharmacists to reach new groups of patients in remote locations. Pharmacies located in rural or small-volume hospitals with limited resources can utilize the expansion of service hours if around-the-clock coverage is in high demand. Not only do advanced clinical offerings help pharmacists reach a wider audience, but they also help improve patient safety by educating and monitoring patients and providing adherence support.

The growing popularity of telepharmacy within the pharmaceutical industry is making medication management more efficient than ever. At Community Cares Rx, we understand the importance of access to prescription medications. Customers who are part of our prescription discount program are able to locate pharmacies online and see which pharmacy offers the best price for their particular medication.

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit https://www.communitycaresrx.com.

Three Foods with Long-Term Health Benefits

Practicing good dietary habits can set you on track for a longer life. According to The Lancet, practicing bad dietary habits can lead to unwanted effects on your health, including death. It’s important that we not only consider how much we eat, but what foods we put into our body. Here are three food items that scientists say are proven to help reduce physical and neurological disease and maintain your overall health:

Coffee

If you crave a cup of coffee each morning, you’re in luck! Coffee dramatically impacts our brain health by keeping us alert in the short-term, blocking adenosine receptors and reducing the risk of depression, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. The compounds in coffee have the power to improve vascular health, repair cellular damage and reduce inflammation. Decaf coffee and green tea have many of the same health benefits as regular coffee, if you don’t want the extra caffeine kick!

Colorful Vegetables and Fruits

Your parents most likely told you to “eat your greens” growing up, but did they tell you to “eat the rainbow?” Different colored fruits and vegetables provide various nutrients and health benefits. Focusing on eating a variety of colors increases your intake of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals that positively impact your long-term health. In addition, colorful fruits and vegetables act as anti-inflammatories and can rid your body of toxins.

Whole Grains

People have been eating whole grains for many years, and scientists have identified numerous health benefits. Whole grains such as oatmeal, quinoa and brown rice can lower your risk of heart disease, help prevent strokes, reduce your risk of obesity, support healthy digestion and supply your body with nutrients and fiber. One of the easiest ways to incorporate this food group into your diet is to choose a whole-grain alternative in place of white pasta or bread.

While fueling your body with nutritious foods plays a significant role in maintaining your overall health, managing your prescription medications is another important factor. When you join the Community Cares Rx program, you can easily find the best prices on your medications.

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit https://www.communitycaresrx.com.

Celebrating National Health Center Week

This month, the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) celebrated National Health Center Week to highlight the accomplishments of health centers and their staff and raise awareness for important public health concerns such as healthcare for children and individuals experiencing homelessness. Here are some of the organizations supporting the vital services that health care centers provide in their communities:

Health Care for the Homeless

The National Health Care for the Homeless Council aims to help those experiencing homelessness receive primary and behavioral health care, case management, outreach and more. There are 300 health centers that receive funding from the Health Care for the Homeless program, and they provide care for one million out of the 1.3 million homeless people that visit health centers each year.

Sesame Street in Communities

More than eight million children in the U.S. visit community health centers to receive health care. Just in time for kids to return to school, NACHC is working with Sesame Street in Communities (SSIC), a bilingual, multimedia initiative featuring beloved Muppets, to enhance learning and help children cope with traumatic experiences.

PRAPARE

PRAPARE, The Protocol for Responding to and Assessing Patients’ Assets, Risks and Experiences, assists health centers in the collection and applications of data to understand patients’ social determinants of health. PRAPARE’s research allows providers to evaluate and improve care, integrate delivery systems and decrease costs.

Interested in learning more about the impact of heath care centers in communities? This infographic courtesy of the NACHC further breaks down the individuals served by health care, the positive health impacts of this service and other key statistical information.

At Community Cares Rx, we understand that an important element of public health includes the access to affordable medications. Learn more at https://www.communitycaresrx.com/.

Three Tips to Cope with Burnout

Burnout is a popular buzzword right now, but neglecting your personal needs is serious, and can push your body past its limits and contribute to ongoing stress. Here are three simple ways to take a break, recharge and fend off burnout.

Put Down the Screens

There’s so much more to life beyond a screen. It may be hard to believe, but in today’s tech-savvy world, adults are spending more time on their devices than they are sleeping. Taking a break from technology can help cultivate closer relationships, increase productivity and focus, reduce stress, and help you become more mindful of the present. Experts suggest setting personal screen limits, especially when you’re feeling overwhelmed and stressed. When you feel the urge to check your work email after hours, remind yourself that your notifications will be there waiting for you the next morning.

Take a Nap

When your body’s battery is running low, taking a snooze can be a great way to recharge. Did you know a 10-20-minute power nap can boost your alertness, make you feel more awake and perform better. In order to ensure that you take a successful nap, The Sleep Foundation recommends setting an alarm, napping earlier in the day and creating a sleep-friendly environment. Pro tip: Blocking out light helps you fall asleep faster, so consider investing in blackout curtains.

Catch Up with Loved Ones

The strength of your social circle plays a pivotal role in your overall health. Interacting with others has the power to lower stress levels, improve your mood and even improve recovery rates from illnesses. Activities such as exercising, cooking and volunteering are all great ways to step away from your daily routine and engage with the people around you. Try incorporating a weekly coffee date or lunchtime walk with a friend to keep your meet-ups regular.

With many household and work-related tasks on our mind each day, consistent access to your prescription medications should not be an added stressor. When you open a Community Cares Rx prescription discount card, there’s no need to worry about finding the right prescription medications. Our membership includes online tools to locate a pharmacy and research drug pricing and availability for easy and affordable access.

For more details on Community Cares Rx and other programs that provide costs saving on prescription medications, please visit http://www.paramountrx.com/.