Parata’s Innovation Summit Brings Together Pharmacists And Healthcare Leaders

Parata’s Innovation Summit Brings Together Pharmacists and Healthcare Leaders

We’re excited to announce that our first Innovation Summit was a success! This two-day summit was created as an idea exchange on the role of pharmacists in an evolving value-driven healthcare system.

The event brought together a broad cross-section of our pharmacy customers, payors, health systems, accountable care organizations (ACOs), and other forward-looking organizations in the healthcare industry.


“Our goal was to create an environment where parties with sometimes differing views could freely and openly exchange ideas, with the focus on improving outcomes and lowering healthcare costs for everyone involved, but especially for patients,” commented Parata CEO Tom Rhoads.

This Innovation Summit follows a number of local and industry recognitions.

“This has been an amazing year for Parata, and we thought the timing was right for this type of Innovation Summit,” Tom added. “Parata’s leadership role has steadily grown within the pharmacy industry, which enabled us to bring together some of the most influential thought leaders in the healthcare community.”

Participants also spent time with Parata’s leadership and engineers and gained additional insight into our company’s innovations and direction.

We received great feedback from participants, who loved the interactive format and overall value of the Summit.  Joe Moose, PharmD and owner of Moose Pharmacy, commented,”The Parata Innovation Summit connected me with all the players in healthcare – pharmacy, technology, payors, PBMs, health systems and ACOs – and helped me visualize where they bring value to healthcare as a whole. Knowing this helped me see where pharmacy’s value points are and how we can maximize that value.  It provided a better understanding of how we could all work together to help each other, and ultimately deliver better care at a better price.”

To learn more about this recent event, click here.  To view more photos from the event, click here.

Top 5 Takeaways: “Pharmacy’s Emerging Role in Accountable Care”

Jamie Hale, Chief Pharmacy Officer for Cornerstone Health Care, recently discussed pharmacy’s role in accountable care. Based in central North Carolina, Cornerstone Health Care is an accountable care organization (ACO) transitioning from the traditional fee-for-service model to a patient-centered medical home system. Jamie leads the development and integration of pharmaceutical care services for the group.

Here are our top five takeaways from Jamie’s webinar, Pharmacy’s Emerging Role in Accountable Care.

1)  You’re already in the medical neighborhood.
As community pharmacists, you’re already a central part of your local healthcare system. And, Gallup’s annual poll consistently ranks pharmacists as one of the most trusted professionals in the country, second only to nurses. You have the influence and the access needed to motivate patients to make good choices.

2)  Approach the players in your area now.
Don’t wait for a proven formula for partnering with ACOs — that could be too late. Start conversations now with physicians, hospitals, home health agencies and other providers who are trying to figure out accountable care. Listen to their goals and needs. Help them understand what you offer so they realize how much they need it.

3)  Define your own role in accountable care organizations.
How will your pharmacy help an ACO achieve its goals? If the organization struggles with transitions in care, develop a plan to help. About 30 percent of medications reviewed by a pharmacist post-discharge require an intervention. That’s an opportunity to catch costly mistakes. Take control of your role in an ACO by identifying these opportunities and implementing plans to address them.

4)  Look to high-tech, high-touch services for better care.
Technology is playing a critical role in new care models. Tools that keep patients engaged in their care plan and allow providers to monitor what’s going on with patients outside of office visits will help ACOs intervene when appropriate and determine the best use of resources for each patient. If you have solutions that could improve patients’ experiences and outcomes while reducing costs, bring them to the table.

5)  Track your impact.
Establish a comprehensive, reportable way to track your involvement with patients. Document the extra touch points you establish, note patients’ participation in health screenings or immunizations, and file any medication interventions you assist with. ACOs are redesigning care models, and much is in flux. Be prepared with data to show your impact — someday, someone will ask for it.

You can view the recorded webinar here: Pharmacy’s Emerging Role in Accountable Care.

To learn how Parata is empowering pharmacists to support coordinated care, improve health outcomes and lower medical costs, contact us today at or (888) PARATA1.

PASS Pack™ Strikes a Chord with Caregivers

Today’s Caregiver magazine has recognized Parata with a 2013 Caregiver Friendly® Award. The awards recognize products, services, books and media created with the needs of caregivers in mind.

Parata was recognized in the Product category for Parata PASS™ adherence packaging, which organizes medications into a strip of pouches the way people take them: by date and time of day.

CEO Tom Rhoads recently attended the Fearless Caregiver Conference in Boca Raton, Florida, to accept the award. While there, he spoke with caregivers, patients and conference presenters. His remarks on stage reflected those conversations.

“Caregiving is a selfless and overwhelming job,” Tom said upon accepting the award. “We hope that by making it simple for your loved ones or patients to manage and take medications, we’re providing you with some comfort and reassurance at the end of your long days.”

That simple message — and the simple solution to a challenge all caregivers face — resonated with the audience.

Offstage, caregivers and patients asked eager questions about PASS Pack — mostly, “Where can I get it?”

“I gave out every business card I had on me,” Tom says, “and several people I met at the show have reached out. We’re working to pair them with pharmacies that offer PASS packaging. Maybe we can help make their lives and jobs as caregivers a little bit easier.”

Today’s Caregiver is the first national magazine published entirely for all family and professional caregivers. For more information about Today’s Caregiver and the Caregiver Friendly Award, visit

In America’s Pharmacist: The Right Way For Adherence

In America’s Pharmacist: The Right Way for Adherence

“So you have this chain of trained people — chemist, physician, pharmacist — and what do you do? You give [medications] to the person who’s least capable of handling them — the patient. And for years, you’ve been doing it over and over and expecting different results. It’s not working.”Bob Lomenick, a multi-pharmacy owner, tells this story often: how his son so clearly explained the need to change the way patients receive and take medications, so the burden of medication management does not fall solely on their shoulders.

This became the genesis for Lomenick’s retail adherence program, Right Way Meds.

Using Parata PASS™ strip packaging as the cornerstone of his adherence program, Lomenick has improved patient adherence and outcomes, secured the 10 percent of his patients who represent half of his revenue, and gained access to 3,000 new patients by catching the attention of a regional insurer.

To learn how he did it, read the full article in America’s Pharmacist.

Chain Drug Review: Tech solutions foster patient-centric Rx model

The nation’s leading chain drug publication recently asked Parata CEO Tom Rhoads for his thoughts on the role technology is playing as pharmacists foster a patient-centric model. We captured some of the highlights below.

For the full article, turn to page 45 of the June 03, 2013 issue of Chain Drug Review.

As healthcare shifts from treating sick patients to helping people live healthy, pharmacists are seeking ways to free up time to spend with patients on high-value services that will improve patient outcomes, including medication therapy management and adherence programs.

Right now, many pharmacists are leveraging dispensing and packaging automation technologies to safely and accurately prepare prescriptions.

This gives pharmacists more time to spend with patients, but technology’s role doesn’t stop there.

“Long-term, the focus will shift to the front of the counter,” says Parata Systems CEO Tom Rhoads, “with technology that engages patients and promotes adherence in an automated and personal way.”

Companies in the tech sector are showing a determination to keep patients actively engaged in managing their medications through mobile apps that send medication reminders, online communities to chat with a pharmacist, packaging that organizes medications to make adherence easy, and more.

Healthcare providers — pharmacists included — will also turn to technology that can help inform them about a patient’s complete care plan so they can work toward better outcomes for each patient.

“Today’s computers can learn, and experts are training them to assist health care providers in bringing excellent care to significant numbers of patients at a low cost,” Rhoads notes. “For example, prominent hospitals are training Watson, IBM’s Jeopardy-winning super computer, as an advisor to diagnose and treat patients. The application of that kind of smart technology will forever change the delivery of patient-centered health care.”

For the full article, turn to page 45 of the June 03, 2013 issue of Chain Drug Review.

Parata Wins 2013 Caregiver Friendly® Award From Today’s Caregiver Magazine

Parata Wins 2013 Caregiver Friendly® Award from Today’s Caregiver Magazine

Today’s Caregiver magazine has recognized Parata as a 2013 “Caregiver Friendly® Award” recipient. The awards recognize products, services, books and media created with the needs of caregivers in mind.


Parata was recognized for its Parata PASS™ adherence packaging, which organizes medications into a strip of pouches the way people take them: by date and time of day.

The packaging makes it easier for patients to know when to take their next dose, and enables caregivers to manage multiple medications with ease at home, ensuring patients take their medications as prescribed, stay healthy and avoid hospital readmissions.

“A growing number of pharmacists are offering strip packaging to their patients, especially those managing chronic conditions,” said Tom Rhoads, CEO of Parata. “Caregiving is a selfless and overwhelming job. Parata works with pharmacists across the country who use strip packaging to make it easier for caregivers to ensure patients take medications as prescribed.”

Today’s Caregiver is the first national magazine published entirely for all family and professional caregivers. For more information about Today’s Caregiver and the Caregiver Friendly Award, visit

To learn more about Parata PASS, visit

Top 5 Takeaways: “Adherence And The Future Of Pharmacy”

Top 5 Takeaways: “Adherence and the Future of Pharmacy”


L&S Pharmacy Tripp LoganTripp Logan, pharmacist and co-owner of MedHere Today®, recently discussed how the future of pharmacy revolves around adherence and how pharmacists can capitalize on this opportunity.

Here are our top five takeaways from Tripp’s webinar, Making an Impact: Adherence and the Future of Pharmacy.

1)  Adherence is not simply auto-fill, a smart phone app, or a blinking cap.
These things focus on the prescription, not the patient. A true adherence program is patient-specific and addresses all causes of non-adherence. Talk with your patient, and her physicians, to understand her unique medication challenges. Then you can select tools that will help each patient manage her meds.

2)  We interact with chronically ill patients more than any other health care provider.
75 percent of healthcare expenditures in the U.S. are spent managing chronic diseases — typically with medication. As pharmacists, we have visibility to their prescriptions and their refills, and our patients trust us. We are the healthcare providers best-situated to impact adherence.

3)  $1 spent on medication adherence can save the health care system $7.
You don’t have to start on a huge scale to help. This study shows that small increases in prescription spending have big impact. According to its formula, a $177 increase in diabetes prescription spending results in a $1,251 decrease in spending per patient.

4)  Capture an additional 29 prescriptions per patient each year.
We see a substantial increase in prescription volume and increased profit margins for patients enrolled in adherence programs. On average, pharmacies capture an additional 29 scripts per enrolled patient each year, with an increased profit margin of $1.87 per script.

5)  Use your proven adherence program to secure partnerships.
Looking for an in with hospitals, home health agencies, accountable care organizations, buying groups, and pharmaceutical manufacturers? When you can demonstrate a positive impact on patient adherence, your pharmacy is primed for powerful, profitable partnerships.

You can view the recorded webinar here:  Making an Impact: Adherence and the Future of Pharmacy.

To learn how Parata is helping pharmacists drive adherence and grow their businesses, contact us today at or (888) PARATA1.

C.O. Bigelow: A Manhattan Pharmacy with a Small-Town Feel

WSJ - C.O. Bigelow

WSJ – C.O. Bigelow

Civil War generals frequented the shop.
Mark Twain strolled the aisles.
Eleanor Roosevelt commended the store’s toiletries.

Today, this 19th-century pharmacy draws fashion magazine editors, playwrights, actresses and regular folks like the rest of us. It’s more than a pharmacy. It’s a destination.

C.O. Bigelow, located on Sixth Avenue, maintains its small-town feel and old-time charm while embracing the latest technology — including Parata automation.

“Going to Bigelow is anything but a chore,” says a customer who has frequented the pharmacy for 17 years.

As a partner of C.O. Bigelow, comments like this warm our hearts. To all our independent pharmacies who provide exceptional customer service, go above and beyond in patient care and offer an unforgettable experience: the sky’s the limit. And we’re here to help you achieve your goals.

Read the full story in the Wall Street Journal article.

Top 5 Questions on Partnering with Home Health

Home health expert Tim Rowan recently hosted a webinar on trends and challenges in home health care and how pharmacists can become involved. After the webinar, we connected with Tim to address your top 5 questions on partnering with home health agencies.

1) I’m a pharmacist who just started working in home health, and I’ve found that many patients taking more than 10 meds each day have two or three drugs that overlap. Is this common?
This is quite common in home health care. Patients are taking drugs prescribed by the hospital, specialists, and their primary physician. Often, the nurse from the home health agency is the only one to see the patient’s complete medication list. Nurses use software programs in the home to flag drug interactions, but this doesn’t address the source of the issue.

2) How are home health agencies paid for Medicare patients?
The nurse assesses the patient during the first home visit. Medicare plugs this information into a formula. Based on the patient’s diagnosis and treatment plan, the home health agency is given a one-time, fixed payment for 60 days of care. If the patient still needs care at the end of those 60 days, the nurse can do another assessment for another 60-day treatment plan and payment.

Most home care agencies’ average length of stay is 50 – 55 days, but some patients will by repeatedly recertified.

3) What’s your best advice for a pharmacist who wants to engage with home health agencies?
Do your homework before you approach an agency. Know how the agency is reimbursed. Is it a Medicare agency? Medicaid? Paid by private insurance companies or the patients? Doing this research will help you understand the agency’s pain points and how you can position your pharmacy as a valuable partner. If medication compliance impacts the agency’s ability to market themselves to the hospitals, you can make a plug for improving patient adherence.

4) That sounds like a lot of research and time. Is it worth it?
There’s a learning curve when you expand into any new market, but the benefits of partnering with home health will outweigh the initial effort. Home health agencies are under pressure to prove their value and demonstrate impact, and they’re receiving patients “quicker and sicker.” If you can form a partnership with an agency based on driving adherence and impacting patient outcomes, you increase their competitive edge — more business for them, more business for you.

5) How do I connect with a home health agency?
Identify the home health agencies working in your area and do the research. Build a presentation around your findings, focusing on how you can solve their big problems. Then, consider your audience. Is your case more compelling to the Director of Nursing or the person handling the finances? Set up a meeting and make your case. Listen while you’re there — they may offer insight into challenges that you can help them solve.

You can view the recorded webinar here: Create Strong Partnerships with Home Health

Pharmacy partnerships help reduce readmissions

With the recent focus on reducing hospital readmissions, most of us are familiar with the stats: one in five Medicare patients is readmitted within 30 days, costing the health care system $26 billion each year.

But the numbers don’t tell patients’ stories. Avoidance, fear and confusion can impact a patient’s care at home and result in another trip to the hospital.

In a recent McKnight’s LTC News & Assisted Living article,  Parata CEO Tom Rhoads relates his own story about hospital readmissions, which can be triggered by confusion about medication.

Read the full article here: Pharmacy partnerships help reduce readmissions