A Pharmacist-Led, Patient-Centered Program Incorporating Motivational Interviewing for Behavior Change to Improve Adherence Rates and Star Ratings in a Medicare Plan
Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy
The Medicare 5-star quality rating system was designed to drive improvements in Medicare quality and to increase accountability among Medicare plans. Medicare star ratings provide significant bonuses for plans that improve medication adherence. Envolve's pharmacy division, Envolve Pharmacy Solutions, which provides services for Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug plans, developed an in-house medication therapy management (MTM) program to improve adherence rates and subsequent star ratings. As
... art of this program, Envolve invested in motivational interviewing (MI) as a means to improve adherence to antihypertensives, antihyperlipidemics, and antidiabetics but recognized the need for additional staff training to ensure pharmacist success with MI techniques. Thus, Envolve engaged a consultant to help train pharmacists and evaluate the program. This best practices article describes the implementation of an MI program and subsequent changes in patient adherence and star ratings. A pharmacist-led, patient-centered adherence program incorporating MI for behavior change was developed and implemented at Envolve. The program used didactic learning, coaching and skills assessments, and a train-the-trainer (TtT) intervention. This approach resulted in improved adherence rates in all 3 therapeutic classes immediately. In addition, a quality improvement process was incorporated to evaluate the improvements in adherence with this new program over 24 months. Key findings of the program are as follows: (a) the program increased adherence rates 5-9 percentage points (chi-square tests for all plans and drug classes measured, P < 0.05) over 5 years and improved Medicare star ratings by 1-2 stars; (b) there is a need for support of pharmacy MTM managers to ensure continued success of the program; and (c) there is value in a TtT program for managers that allows them to provide continuous evaluation and feedback to staff for improvement. Each year, as the Medicare star ratings system matures and plans are held more accountable for improving adherence measures, high star ratings become more difficult to attain. This MI TtT program for pharmacists allows for rapid cycle change in response to these challenges. Funding was provided by Envolve Pharmacy Solutions, which contracted with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), School of Pharmacy for the development and implementation of the motivational interviewing and train-the-trainer programs described in this best practices article. Spears, Erkens, and Misquitta are employees of Envolve Pharmacy Solutions. Stebbins and Cutler are faculty in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy at the UCSF School of Pharmacy, who were contracted through Envolve Pharmacy Solutions to provide consulting services for this best practice.