Incorporating social determinants of health into comprehensive medication management: Insights from the field

Deborah L. Pestka, Chris Espersen, Lindsay A. Sorge, Kylee A. Funk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Social determinants of health affect all aspects of health, including a patient's ability to access and appropriately use medications. Objective: To understand the experience of pharmacists incorporating social determinants of health into their comprehensive medication management visits. Methods: Two pharmacists practicing comprehensive medication management in an outpatient behavioral health clinic received regular coaching for 10 months from a social determinants of health consultant on incorporating social determinants of health into their visits. At the end of the project, an interview was conducted with both participating pharmacists to learn about their experience. All coaching calls and the interview were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed qualitatively. Results: Fifteen codes emerged to describe the pharmacists' experience incorporating social determinants of health into their visits. The codes were categorized using the steps of the Pharmacists' Patient Care Process. Additionally, there was a category of codes describing larger system issues that posed a barrier to addressing social determinants of health, as well as a category of lessons that pharmacists learned through the process of incorporating social determinants of health into their visits. Conclusion: Given the prevalence of social determinants of health and the dramatic effect they have on a patient's health and wellbeing, more work needs to be done to determine how health care teams can incorporate and address social determinants of health into their visits. This work provides an important first step to understanding how incorporating social determinants of health fit into the practice of comprehensive medication management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1038-1047
Number of pages10
JournalJACCP Journal of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy
Volume3
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project was made possible through support from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Pharmacotherapy Publications, Inc.

Keywords

  • medication therapy management
  • mental health
  • social determinants of health

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