AvitaCare Atlanta is your friendly, comfortable, community health care hub offering quality care with the people you know and trust. Avita Pharmacy’s specially trained teams’ partner with your health care provider to deliver expert, personalized pharmacy care. Located onsite for fast and convenient prescription pickup or discreet delivery setup.
The importance of cost-effective, comprehensive pharmaceutical services for the Atlanta community is undeniable.
In fact, over half of survey respondents (55%) in a 2021 study on Atlanta prescription drug costs reported being either “somewhat worried” or “very worried” about affording the cost of prescription drugs.
Pharmacists provide valuable connections to care for patients. For instance, a recent study found that patients visit their community pharmacies almost twice as often as they visit their physicians.
Because access to pharmaceutical care is so vital for the long-term health of patients like you, how is AvitaCare Atlanta making access to pharmacists and pharmaceutical drugs easier?
Read on to find out.
AvitaCare Atlanta’s Pharmacy Services
Creating less barriers to communication is the name of the game for the pharmacy team at AvitaCare Atlanta.
A primary way to achieve this: strong relationships with the Atlanta community and patients.
“Compared to other retail pharmacies, we are very unique. We build a relationship with our patients because we keep them in care for a long time and we spend more time with them than your average, big-box pharmacy,” says pharmacy director at AvitaCare Atlanta, Jason Nash, PharmD, AAHIVP.
AvitaCare Atlanta provides comprehensive services to the community, and inclusivity is always top-of-mind for staff.
“We understand and empathize with our patients much better than your standard retail pharmacies that don’t really have a niche. Because their focus is not on the patients, they don’t create empathy with patients. We, on the other hand, take time to build relationships, build trust, and get to know our patients,” says Jason.
AvitaCare Atlanta’s compassionate care driven pharmacy solutions include:
- Polypharmacy services
- Classes and educational seminars for community members, specifically about diabetes and HIV
- Prescription delivery services
- LGBTQ+ specific care and resources
- Pharmaceutical cost assistance programs
- Case managers
- And more!
These solutions help us deliver the highest quality; most well-rounded care possible.
The Benefit of an On-Site Pharmacy
Pharmacy services are crucial to health. Have you ever gone to your primary care provider or a specialist taking time away from work or your family only to have an additional trip to the pharmacy?
AvitaCare Atlanta’s on-site pharmacy saves you time and energy so you can get back to the things you love or need to do quickly.
“At a stand-alone, big-box pharmacy, when a provider writes a medication new to the patient, they will get feedback from the pharmacy on whether the drug is covered and other information. Sometimes, this starts a back-and-forth between the provider, the patient, the insurance company, and the pharmacy. Patients don’t have that issue here. Because our pharmacy is on-site, we can communicate directly with the providers and get solutions for patients more quickly,” says Jason.
Also, at a stand-alone, large retail pharmacy, providers and pharmacists may play phone tag for hours trying to iron out details about your prescriptions.
That’s not the case with AvitaCare Atlanta.
Leann Duke, Pharmacist in Charge, PharmD, AAHIVP, says “The main benefit is the communication between the pharmacy and the provider. I have previously worked as a stand-alone pharmacy, and a lot of those relationships were over the phone. The ease of communication is a big improvement, I can just walk down the hall and talk to our providers,” says Leann.
Retention in Care
For the best health outcomes, retention in pharmacy services is important. Leann also says that one thing AvitaCare Atlanta excels at is retaining people in care, especially for patients who are on PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) or need medication for HIV.
Studies suggest that only 32% of people in Atlanta who are on PrEP are retained in care long-term.
Also, people who live in Atlanta and who need HIV medication tend to stray from drug compliance and consistency over 24-month periods.
Leann and her team are working to change that.
“We have excellent communication with our patients, we work tirelessly to keep them compliant in their care, so they have better health outcomes. We text patients, we call them personally, we discuss shipping options with them, especially when we get notified, they need a refill for their prescriptions.”
Polypharmacy is Key
Polypharmacy is the simultaneous use of multiple drugs by a single patient, for one or more conditions.
Of course, taking multiple prescription drugs can lead to a higher risk of experiencing harmful side effects from medications.
That’s why our providers are dedicated to closely monitoring each patient who needs polypharmacy services and keep risks to a minimum.
“I work closely and have access to the patients’ providers, so when there are questions of drug interactions or drug combinations that may not be the best option for the patient, we work well with our team of providers to make a permanent note of this. We work together on a better solution for the patient,” says Jason.
HIV and Diabetes Program
Diabetes prevalence was 3.8% higher in people living with HIV (PLHIV) compared with general population adults, according to The National Library for Medicine.
Not only do PLHIV have a higher risk for diabetes, but “Their HIV medications have quite a large array of enter drug interactions,” says clinical pharmacist Corey Woodward, PharmD, AAHIVP.
Enter Corey and the AvitaCare Atlanta team’s solution: a clinical education program specifically designed to help PLHIV and those impacted with diabetes understand their medications. The team ensures that there are no negative drug interactions.
Because of the potential for negative drug interactions, Corey says, “Some clinics would just say, ‘well, we can’t give you your medication’ because they don’t have someone skilled in dose adjustments and other important skills. I specialize in this, though. I can create a drug regimen for our patients and monitor them, so the interaction between drugs is minimal to none.”
Corey is also an expert in guiding patients with HIV and Diabetes through their drug regimen.But there are also financial assistance programs for AvitaCare Atlanta patients that help reduce the cost of drugs.
How does the pharmacy team do this?
Through the research of the most cost-effective options for patients, a team of social workers finds local pharmaceutical assistance programs to reduce costs, dose optimization, and other methods.
“Many of our patients have been told over and over that health care is not affordable to them. Basic health care is sometimes out of reach. I do my best to try to give them the care that they deserve without the cost that they don’t deserve,” says Corey.
Come see our pharmacists today!
Are you ready to book an appointment with our team and experience the benefits of an on-site, community-focused, infectious disease and LGBTQ+ trained team of pharmacists and providers?
Go to our website to book an appointment today.
Leann Duke is the Pharmacist in Charge at AvitaCare Atlanta, with 14+ years of experience. She holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Mercer University, and she is certified as an HIV Pharmacist and Apexus certified in 340B programs and care.
Corey Woodward is a Clinical Pharmacist at AvitaCare Atlanta specializing in licensed, pharmacist-led medication therapy management through a collaborative practice agreement. He provides direct patient chronic care management in diabetes, hypertension, anticoagulation and HIV. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology from the University of Oklahoma. He has a Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Oklahoma.
Jason Nash is the Pharmacy Director at AvitaCare Atlanta. With over a decade of experience, Jason received his Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering from Mercer University. He has his Doctor of Pharmacy from Mercer University. He is licensed in HIV Pharmacotherapy Practice-Based Programs.