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The U.S. pharmacy chain Walgreens wants to introduce a nationwide medication management for hospital patients. From admission to 30 days after discharge, pharmacists will now advise patients. To begin with, the „Well Transitions“ program is being implemented in more than 150 hospitals in which Walgreens has branches. Other hospitals are to follow.

An important element of cooperation between the clinic, pharmacist and patient is that already during the hospital stay, a pharmacist verifies the composition of the drug interactions. In addition, members of the pharmacists are trained in prescribing the correct medication.


Commentary: Lack of adherence to treatment, and the lack of knowledge about the proper use of medications result in enormous costs in the health system, in addition to causing health hazards to the patient. Thus, the direct costs of non-compliance, such as hospital admissions, are estimated at several billion Euros annually. There are also indirect costs, for example if a disease is not adequately treated and the patient is unable to work.

Among hospitalized patients it is believed that about 3-5 percent of hospital admissions are due to an adverse drug reaction. A nationwide medication management for hospital patients – as practiced in the UK – could also reduce costs in Germany by reducing re-admission rates. In the outpatient area this necessity has already been recognised by the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV) and the Federal Union of German Associations of Pharmacists (ABDA). Here, it is a common treatment concept aimed at chronically ill patients who take at least five drugs permanently. Both a doctor and a pharmacist control the medication management for the patient together for a year.

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