A recent survey forecasted that the pharmacy automation market will hit $8.8 billion in the year 2018. In the year of 2011, the pharmacy market was valued at $4.7 billion and nearly 60% of the generated revenue came from automated medication dispensing system.
Pharmacists believed that this pharmacy segment is expected to see a compound annual growth rate of 7.7% and reach a valuation of $4.6 billion by 2020. There was a pressing need to prevent medical prescription errors, and dispensing the right dosage of the medicine and reviewing the inventory for specific locations help increase the efficiency of the pharmacists along with keeping the expenditure low.
Pharmacy Market Experiences Continued Growth
Pharmacists have seen sudden surge in the pharmacy segment as the entire industry was shifting from traditional brand name drugs to specialty drugs and not to forget automation. Over the next four years, specialty drugs will account for 52% of the pharmacy industry’s revenues. Since more and more of these products are being dispensed by a small number of large specialty pharmacies, community pharmacies must strategically position themselves to handle an increasing number of these expensive products with unique clinical requirements as they are introduced into the market place.
Coordinated Healthcare Networks
Healthcare providers must be connected and provide coordinated care through smooth information flow. The importance of coordinating the healthcare sector and bridging the gaps in care to provide positive outcomes can’t be underestimated. Inadequate care coordination is estimated to cost as much as $45 billion to the healthcare industry. Coordinated healthcare will hardly be possible without interoperable technology: Teams connecting providers and specialists everywhere with the aim to deliver quality care. Understand the fact that every patient is different. At the end of the day, all the developments, treatments, and medicines have to be administered to an individual patient.
Health System Pharmacies Generating Revenue
As a growing percentage of health systems’ revenue comes from outside the hospital, pharmacies are an increasingly important source of revenue. In addition to the obvious expansion into specialty pharmaceuticals, capturing discharged prescriptions, working with outpatient infusion clinics, optimizing the opportunities, maximizing patient assistance and recovery programs, and expanding retail and ambulatory pharmacy services are just a few ways pharmacies can generate revenue. The hospital pharmacy can’t be overlooked as an important piece of the revenue cycle, and given the complexities in reimbursement, many systems are leaving money on the table. Recovery solutions help hospitals ensure that the pharmacy revenue cycle is running efficiently.
Consolidation Driving Centralized Service Centers
The industry continues to see tremendous consolidation in all areas, including providers, payers, and vendors. Ongoing mergers and consolidation drive the need for centralization of pharmacy operations designed to help large health systems utilize a centralized hub to manage costs, improve order entry and verification, and standardize policies and procedures. Health system pharmacies have the opportunity to centralize services such as order entry, compounding, packaging, and dispensing that allows clinicians to focus on patient care and drive costs down through improved inventory management and supply chain visibility.
Creating one central formulary for the system is a complex issue, but a must to ensure consistency of patient care and optimal patient outcomes. Standardizing drugs throughout a medical system reduces variation, which limits medication pick errors, increases patient safety and improves patient care.
Renewed Interest In 340B – Addressing The Growth Oversight And Reimbursement Changes- Pharmacy Billing
The ongoing policy debate over the 340B drug pricing program has raised health system leadership interest in the 340B program to fund hospitals’ mission and support community benefit. While participation in 340B adds complexity to pharmacy operations, the cost savings and opportunities are significant. As a result, pharmacy and supply chain leaders have renewed their focus on 340B to address rising drug costs and to foster specialty and retail partnerships for expanded patient care access and support.
To help navigate the complexities of 340B and patient assistance programs, health systems can draw on industry expertise to develop actionable recommendations to optimize program participation and utilize a robust 340B management software package for audit preparations.
Going into 2018, there are several potential regulatory changes that, if passed by CMS, could benefit pharmacy for the 2019 Medicare Part D plans, including proposed changes in the regulations on any willing pharmacy and ability to participate in networks, as well as changes addressing DIR fees and identifying solutions to mitigate the assessments to pharmacy and the patient.