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Patient and phaRmacist telephonic encounters (PARTE) in an underserved rural patient population with asthma: results of a pilot study.

Young HN, Havican SN, Griesbach S, Thorpe JM, Chewning BA, Sorkness CA. Patient and phaRmacist telephonic encounters (PARTE) in an underserved rural patient population with asthma: results of a pilot study. Telemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association. 2012 Jul 1; 18(6):427-33.

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Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: To assess the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary impact of a telepharmacy intervention in an underserved, rural asthma patient population. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Patients with asthma were randomized to receive either standard care or telephone consultations from pharmacists regarding asthma self-management over a 3-month period. Qualitative interviews were conducted to identify participants' attitudes/opinions regarding the intervention. Baseline and follow-up surveys assessed asthma control, patient activation, and medication utilization. RESULTS: Ninety-eight adults were recruited (78% accrual); 83 completed the study (15% dropout). Participants reported positive opinions and believed the intervention improved their asthma self-management. The intervention group had significantly higher patient activation compared with the control (p < 0.05). There were no significant between-group differences regarding asthma control. However, within-group analyses of the intervention group showed an improvement in asthma control (p < 0.01) and medication adherence (p < 0.01). No within-group differences were found for the control group. CONCLUSIONS: This telepharmacy intervention is feasible and showed indicators of effectiveness, suggesting the design is well suited for a robust study to evaluate its impact in uncontrolled asthma patients. Pharmacists helping patients manage asthma through telecommunications may resolve access barriers and improve care.





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