Congratulations to Jennifer Bacci, Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacy; H. Steve White, Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacy; and Sabra Zarâa, CHOICE PhD student, Pharmacy on receiving one of the 2019 pilot research grants awarded by the UW Population Health Initiative. The interdisciplinary team’s project is titled, “Community pharmacist integrated population health management of people living with epilepsy.”
Epilepsy is a complex spectrum of seizure disorders, affecting approximately 3.4 million people nationally and 75,000 people in Washington state; and the number is increasing. It affects quality of life and leads to significant health and socioeconomic disparities. The experiences of a person with epilepsy involves managing multiple co-existing health conditions and taking anti-seizure drugs, the mainstay of treatment that are often accompanied by significant adverse effects. Yet, healthcare and community services are often fragmented and uncoordinated.
Community pharmacists are among the most accessible and trustworthy healthcare providers with extensive knowledge of drug therapy, yet are seldom leveraged to fill the gaps in epilepsy care or many other non-communicable diseases. Community pharmacists educate patients about their disease, ensure dosing accuracy, monitor for side effects and drug interactions, and encourage medication adherence. At a population level, community pharmacists collaborate with other healthcare providers and assess medication use patterns and patient outcomes data to ensure medications are used effectively, safely, and in a cost-effective manner. No models exist for engaging community pharmacists in population health approaches to epilepsy care.
This project seeks to develop a community pharmacist integrated population health intervention for people living with epilepsy by (1) identifying best practices to address the needs of persons living with epilepsy and their caregivers; (2) develop an intervention using a stakeholder driven and consensus building approach; and (3) evaluate the acceptability, appropriateness, and feasibility of the intervention. The intervention developed from this project will be piloted and evaluated for effectiveness in future research.
Jennifer Bacci, Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacy
H. Steve White, Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacy
Sabra Zarâa, CHOICE PhD student, Pharmacy
John Miller, Neurology and Neurological Surgery
Edward Novotny, Pediatrics and Neurology
Bryan Weiner, Global Health and Health Services