Walgreens Discusses Success of Community Pharmacy Programs in Improving Patient Medication Adherence

  Walgreens Discusses Success of Community Pharmacy Programs in Improving
  Patient Medication Adherence

         Company presents research findings at World Congress Summit

Business Wire

DEERFIELD, Ill. -- March 18, 2013

Walgreens (NYSE: WAG) (Nasdaq:WAG) recently presented the latest research on
how community pharmacy programs, as well as new adherence models and metrics,
can help drive better medication adherence. The research, presented at the
World Congress Summit in Philadelphia last Friday, demonstrates the company’s
success in improving patient medication adherence by developing an
infrastructure that tracks patient level adherence and uses predictive
modeling along with risk stratification to identify patient patterns.

Kristi Rudkin, PharmD, senior director of product development for Walgreens,
and Michael S. Taitel, PhD, Walgreens senior director of clinical outcomes and
analytic services, discussed the research findings along with product-specific
interventions focused on empowering patients to better self-manage their
condition. The discussion also examined the latest research related to
new-to-therapy counseling and automated Interactive Voice Responses (IVR)
refill reminders.

“Medication non-adherence is one of the greatest and most costly barriers in
treating illness today,” Rudkin said. “By developing programs and services
that can help reduce these barriers, and examining ways to drive cost savings
and improved health outcomes through better adherence, we can help more people
get, stay and live well.”

New-to-therapy patients often face adherence challenges while trying to learn
a new medication regimen. A retrospective cohort study assessing the impact of
pharmacist-led, face-to-face counseling in new-to-therapy statin patients
found that compared to usual pharmacy care, those patients receiving
face-to-face counseling had 7.2 percent higher adherence.^1

Forgetfulness can also be a contributor to non-adherence. In a pilot program,
automated refill reminders (ARR) significantly improved patient adherence to
medications used to treat chronic conditions. Patients who received automated
Interactive Voice Responses (IVR) telephonic reminders had a significantly
higher medication possession ratio (MPR) compared with patients who did not
receive reminders. Additionally, the persistence for the intervention was
nearly eight days longer than that of the control group.

“Helping patients improve their medication adherence is a challenge for
providers, payers and many others within the health care system,” Taitel said.
“We’ve demonstrated the effectiveness of several programs and initiatives -
including our new to therapy program, automated refill reminder calls.
Integrating predictive modeling and risk stratification will help us be even
more effective at driving better adherence, and ultimately better health

Medication non-adherence is estimated to cost the U.S. health care system $300
billion dollars per year^2. The World Congress Summit to Improve Adherence and
Enhance Patient Engagement gathered medical experts to address ways in which
effective interventions and coordination can improve adherence rates and drive
better patient outcomes. The summit took place March 14-15 in Philadelphia.

About Walgreens

As the nation's largest drugstore chain with fiscal 2012 sales of $72 billion,
Walgreens (www.walgreens.com) vision is to become America’s first choice for
health and daily living. Each day, Walgreens provides more than 6 million
customers the most convenient, multichannel access to consumer goods and
services and trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and wellness services
and advice in communities across America. Walgreens scope of pharmacy services
includes retail, specialty, infusion, medical facility and mail service, along
with respiratory services. These services improve health outcomes and lower
costs for payers including employers, managed care organizations, health
systems, pharmacy benefit managers and the public sector. The company operates
8,071 drugstores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
Take Care Health Systems is a Walgreens subsidiary that is the largest and
most comprehensive manager of worksite health and wellness centers and
in-store convenient care clinics, with more than 700 locations throughout the

^1 Taitel M, Jiang J, Rudkin K, Ewing S, Duncan I. The impact of pharmacist
face-to-face counseling to improve medication adherence among patients
initiating statin therapy, Patient Preference and Adherence, 2012, 6(1)

^2 NEHI Research Shows Patient Medication Nonadherence Costs Health Care
System $290 Billion Annually


Jim Cohn,  847-315-2950
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