Health Beat - Winter 2020 - 8

Right Dose
Meds-to-Beds program fills prescriptions for patients
By John Berggren

For more than a year,
patients at Salina Regional
Health Center have had
the option of getting their
home medication prescriptions filled
before they leave the hospital.
"Meds-to-Beds is an optional service
that's not trying to take the place of
home pharmacies," says Carleigh Cozad,
PharmD, the outpatient clinical pharmacist on staff who launched the Medsto-Beds program at Salina Regional. "It's
offered primarily as a convenience for
patients to try and make it easier for
them to continue their care at home."
In addition to offering this convenience, Meds-to-Beds was implemented
to help improve medication utilization,
which can lead to better recoveries
and improved management of chronic
health conditions.
Cheryl Trygg, of Salina, a recent
patient in the hospital for bronchitis
and bronchial pneumonia, was happy
to learn of the program. After taking
IV antibiotics in the hospital, doctors
switched her to oral medications once
she was well enough to go home.
"I was surprised when I heard about
the service," Trygg says. "I was glad

"Missing a prescribed
dose of a medication
because you can't get
your prescription filled
can be detrimental
to patients."
Carleigh Cozad, PharmD

when I didn't need to go stand in line
at a pharmacy to get my prescriptions
filled. I think a lot of people are going
to like this service."

Impacting Rural Areas
Meds-to-Beds has been growing in
popularity at Salina. About half of all
hospital patients surveyed say they're
interested in the program and about a
quarter are already using the service.
Upon admission to the hospital,
pharmacy techs on staff review all
home medications patients take during
a face-to-face consultation. After the
consultations, patients are informed
about the Meds-to-Beds program.


Patients can opt-in to participate
at this time, or they can inform their
nurse if they decide they'd like to take
advantage of the service later during
the course of their hospital stay.
Beyond offering convenience, the
Meds-to-Beds program helps fill a definite void many patients encounter.
About half of SRHC patients are from
rural areas outside Saline County-an
hour or more away from the hospital.
Others live in small communities that
don't have a pharmacy. Even if there is
a pharmacy in their hometown, some
patients miss the window to get to their
pharmacy by the time they reach home
after leaving the hospital.
"Meds-to-Beds helps alleviate many
of these issues," says Erica Wilkinson,
PharmD, a clinical pharmacist on
staff in Salina Regional's Outpatient
Pharmacy. "Programs like this are
really more common in urban hospitals,
but there's potential to make an even
greater impact in rural areas like the
one we serve."
Staying on track with medication
is important.
"Missing a prescribed dose of a
medication because you can't get your
prescription filled can be detrimental to
patients," Cozad says.
The service also provides an additional level of oversight: While doctors
and staff pharmacists assigned to the
patient care units at the hospital provide primary care, Meds-to-Beds pharmacists also review patient profiles and
can facilitate changes if the need arises.
In addition, Meds-to-Beds pharmacists offer education and counseling

Health Beat - Winter 2020

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