Online Program

Pharmacist PDMP Use in a Midwestern State: Implications for Prevention and Treatment

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Michael Fendrich, PhD, School of Social Work, University of Connecticut, Hartford, CT
Katinka Hooijer, ABD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI
Janelle Bryan, ABD, School of Social Work, University of Connecticut, West Hartford, CT
Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMPs) require pharmacists to track scheduled drug prescriptions submitted to pharmacies by retail patients that they serve.  We present the results of a pilot study conducted one-year after the implementation of a new pharmacy-based PDMP in one Midwestern state.  In June, 2014, we emailed 162 web-based surveys to pharmacists in one statewide retail chain and received 48 responses. The questionnaire was informed by preliminary focus groups which identified retail pharmacists as being either “law enforcement oriented” or “health care provider oriented” in their encounters with patients suspected of misusing prescriptions.  Most respondents saw their role in this process as combining some features of law enforcement officials and some features of health care providers. About 43% of the respondents felt that, when it comes to the dispensing of scheduled prescription medication they look at most situations like “I am a health care provider;” 53% felt that they were “sometimes like a health care provider, sometimes like the police.”  Only one pharmacist indicated that he/she looked at most situations like"I am...the police."  Consistent with this, over 75% of the respondents indicated that when people with addiction problems present fake prescriptions, “sometimes they should be treated like patients and sometimes like criminals.”  Pharmacists who were more health care provider oriented tended to report that they always counseled suspected patients about risk (55% vs. 27%; p <.10) and always advised patients about addiction treatment (20% vs. 4%; p<.10).  A majority of pharmacists found that it was relatively easy to input information into the PDMP (66%) and to extract information from the PDMP (80%).  These preliminary findings suggest that while PDMPs are useful and user friendly, variation in pharmacists’ attitudes may diminish PDMPs' value for connecting patients to addiction treatment.  Implications for prevention, treatment, training, and further research are discussed.

Learning Areas:

Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Explain how a new prescription drug monitoring program was used by pharmacists. Examine the extent to which use of the program increased pharmacist connections to health care providers. Compare law pharmacists with respect to their law enforcement vs. health care provider orientation.

Keyword(s): Prescription Drug Abuse and Misuse, Policy/Policy Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a principal or co principal investigator of multiple NIDA and SAMHSA funded grants addressing research and interventions in the area of substance abuse. I have authored numerous peer reviewed publications addressing substance abuse issues and their relationship to epidemiology, prevention, intervention, treatment and law enforcement. I am particularly interested in the impact of substance abuse policies on the emergence of new risk behaviors and access to treatment.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.