Question: What exactly is Medication Therapy Management? Mom’s primary care physician mentioned this briefly at our last doctor’s appointment as an option for my mom who has had several “close calls” recently with overdosing on prescription drugs. Please advise.
Answer: Medication Therapy Management (MTM) is a process that reviews and evaluates how each senior is responding to their unique group of medications—prescription, non-prescriptions, over the counter and natural medications, supplements, vitamins, minerals…any item that is in use to improve health. It also evaluates food intake, how the medications are taken or used.
Families, caregivers and other loved ones also share their insights about how the senior is responding to the “medications”, as many of them are with the senior at various time of the day. An action plan is developed to address these issues or concerns. There are many things that the senior and/or their family can do to improve the benefits of the “medications” in use and to minimize the side effects or other problems. Prescribers are also contacted for changes in medications orders, provided with information about the use of multiple medications and changes made in medication dosage, and frequency of dose.
Having one person organize such reviews and provide information to other members of the healthcare team can be very successful in avoiding the “close calls” that cause seniors end up in the emergency room, admitted to the hospital or even subsequently moved to the nursing facility.
Medication Therapy Management may also be known by another name…Comprehensive Medication Review (CMR) which is defined as a systematic process of collecting patient-specific information, assessing medication therapies to identify medication-related problems, developing a prioritized list of medication-related problems, and creating a plan to resolve them with the patient, caregiver and/or prescriber. A CMR is an interactive person-to-person consultation conducted between the patient and/or caregiver and the pharmacist and is designed to improve patients’ knowledge of their prescription, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, herbal therapies and dietary supplements, identify and address problems or concerns that patients may have, and empower patients to self-manage their medications and their health condition(s).
Lynn Harrelson, R.Ph., FASCP, Senior Care Pharmacist
8302 Cheshire Way
Louisville, Kentucky 40222