ASHP Survey of Specialty Pharmacies Highlights Concerns Over Access to Payer Networks, Interest in Serving New Populations

The American Society of Well being-System Pharmacists’ (ASHP) first annual survey of health-system specialty pharmacies (HSSPs) supplied insights into the considerations of specialty pharmacists and offered a possibility for professionals within the area to stipulate a possible future for specialty pharmacy. Offered on the 2021 ASHP Specialty Pharmacy Convention, the outcomes of the survey indicated anxieties over reimbursement, delight in affected person satisfaction, and an curiosity in serving new populations.

The survey, launched in September 2020, was created with the intention of capturing insights into the state of specialty pharmacy observe inside hospitals and well being techniques. It acquired responses from 114 distinctive organizations, together with chief pharmacy officers and administrators of pharmacy from organizations which may have a specialty pharmacy, leaders in different specialty pharmacy organizations, and all ASHP members.

Respondents had been requested to charge potential areas of alternative for development on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 representing low alternative and 4 representing excessive alternative.

“New populations to serve” was constantly ranked the very best space of alternative by members, averaging a 3.08 rating on the dimensions. Responses additionally point out that serving new therapeutic classes (2.96), direct contracting with employers and producers (2.8), and affected person engagement by means of telehealth applied sciences (2.71) are seen as areas with the very best potential for development.

When requested to pick out their high 3 challenges within the coming yr, 82.9% of respondents indicated that entry to payer networks was of essential concern. Regularly cited considerations additionally included adjustments to the 340B Drug Pricing Program (42.9%), shrinking reimbursement from payers (40%), and entry to restricted distribution medication (34.3%).

“There’s been a variety of dialogue on the federal stage about modifying the 340B program,” mentioned Craig A. Pedersen, PhD, RPh, FAPhA, FASHP, pharmacy supervisor at Virginia Mason Medical Middle and session presenter, in the course of the session. “And that clearly has trickled all the way down to well being techniques specialty pharmacies caring about that.”

Survey members additionally indicated their highest precedence areas for enchancment, with payer contracting ranked highest at 60%. Different areas of precedence included enhancements in medical outcomes (38.1%), entry to restricted distribution medication (34.3%), reporting skills (32.4%), and gaining or sustaining accreditation (24.8%).

Responses to the survey additionally indicated excessive quantities of confidence in affected person satisfaction, with 89.5% of respondents indicating that “affected person satisfaction and stage of service” was a high level of delight. Additionally excessive on the listing had been remedy entry and affordability navigation (40%), demonstrating worth of specialty pharmacy companies (38.1%), and pharmacists embedded in specialty clinics. Lowest on the listing had been payer contracting (3.8%), infusion companies (1.9%), and affected person engagement by means of telehealth (1%).


JoAnn Stubbings, Craig A. Pedersen. ASHP Nationwide Survey Outcomes-Well being System Specialty Pharmacy. Offered at: 2021 ASHP Specialty Pharmacy Convention; July 14, 2021; digital.


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