HCFO Researcher Quoted on New Role for Pharmacists in Retail Clinics

Publication Date: 
April 14, 2015

As retail clinics seek to meet the demands of the “convenience revolution” in health care, pharmacists in these and similar venues are stepping into a new role—one that is out from behind the counter, The Los Angeles Times reported. Pharmacists at AltaMed clinic see patients with chronic illnesses to help them manage their symptoms as well as discuss diet, exercise and stress. Commenting on this new role for pharmacists, former HCFO grantee Ateev Mehrotra, M.D., Harvard Medical School, noted “It’s probably exhilarating and also a little overwhelming.” In his HCFO-funded study, Mehrotra and colleagues examined the impact of retail health clinics on health care utilization and costs and found that patients who visit a retail clinic are subsequently less likely to seek care from a primary care physician, which has implications for long-term care continuity.