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The Importance of Care Coordination


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During your annual physical, ask your physician this question, “Is there someone on the team I can talk to if I have questions about these medications?” What you are really asking your physician is, “Who is going to be my care coordinator between all of my prescriptions and physicians?”


Nearly one-third of older U.S. adults visit at least five different doctors every year. With multiple physicians prescribing multiple prescriptions, this can make it difficult to coordinate care between all. Therefore, it is important to have a care coordinator to speak with about your medications. Let’s dive into what care coordination is, why it is important, and how Tria Health is going the extra mile in care coordination.


What is Care Coordination?

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality defines care coordination as deliberately organizing patient care activities and sharing information among all the participants concerned with a patient’s care to achieve safer and more effective care. Our health system is becoming more complex and fragmented and so that makes it even more important to have someone that can be the head of tracking all your prescriptions.


What is the Importance?

Since most older adults are visiting at least five different doctors every year, this can become a confusing process not only for the patient, but also for physicians. Physicians are not perfect when it comes to communicating with a patient’s other physicians or making sure they are not double prescribing.


When a care coordinator is appointed, the coordinator can come into the situation and be the glue between the multiple physicians. There are many results to proper care coordination, but here are a few:

  • Reduced hospital admissions

  • Improved quality of chronic disease management

  • Improved patient satisfaction

  • Better access to specialty care


What Is Already Being Put into Place for Care Coordination?

The New England Journal of Medicine Catalyst writes of three different ways that care coordination is starting to be implemented and used.

  1. Primary Care Coordination – This coordination involves registered nurses (RN) being the main point of contact and coordinating with the physician. The RN would be the one to develop the plan a care plan from there.

  2. Acute Care Coordination – This coordination is required for those that have health conditions that are more emergencies related. Coordinators in this role will schedule follow ups after an emergency visit and check in on the patient’s progression.

  3. Post-Acute/Long-Term Care Coordination – This coordination is for patients that are transferred to multiple facilities for rehabilitation, long-term care, or post-acute care. They require more coordinated care to manage all the medications that are being transferred.


If you or someone you know is taking multiple medications or seeing multiple physicians, then it can be beneficial to find a medical expert that can help with coordinating your medications. Take control of your health today!


The Tria Health Difference

Most care coordination plans are completed by registered nurses. At Tria Health, our pharmacists are your care coordinators! Medications are the primary treatment method for chronic conditions and pharmacists are medication experts. This makes pharmacists the most reliable at helping you navigate your medications.


Tria Health is a no cost benefit available through select members’ health plans. Tria Health’s Pharmacy Advocate Program offers one-on-one, private consultations with a Tria Health Pharmacist. During your consultation, your pharmacist will review all your current medications, including vitamins and supplements. Tria Health will assist you in identifying any possible drug interactions or savings opportunities! Your pharmacist will work with you and your doctor(s) to ensure the intended outcomes from your medications are being received.


Questions?

Contact the Tria Health Desk at 1.888.799.8742


Resources

  1. Almost 1 in 3 U.S. Seniors Now Sees at Least 5 Doctors Per Year - Consumer Health News | HealthDay

  2. Choosing a Doctor: Quick Tips - MyHealthfinder | health.gov

  3. Facilitators and Barriers to Care Coordination in Patient-centered Medical Homes (PCMHs) from Coordinators’ Perspectives - PMC (nih.gov)

  4. Care Coordination | Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (ahrq.gov)

  5. What Is Care Coordination? (nejm.org)