Recently, the federal government, specifically The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, had been considering making nursing homes hire independent pharmacists to assess and administer medication in nursing home settings. After initially supporting this idea, the legislators decided that they would not require nursing homes to hire independent pharmacists.
The initial plan was proposed to create and enforce stricter
rules regarding overseeing and monitoring patients’ drug regimens. The U.S. Centers for Medicare and
Medicaid Services recently decided against the new policy because they feared that it would negatively affect the nursing home industry without affecting the quality of patient prescription oversight. Some feel that this decision was made partially on account of the large drop in stock value that major nursing homes experienced after the announcement of the initial independent pharmacist plan.
According to an article by Bloomberg, which was covering the event, "Federal law requires nursing homes to review their
residents’ drug regimens at least once a month. Homes “very
often” contract with pharmacies that provide their drugs to
also conduct the monthly reviews, sometimes at rates that are
“below fair market value,” according to the government. The relationships can create conflicts-of-interest if the
pharmacists are pressured to fill prescriptions residents don’t
need or substitute higher-priced drugs, the government said."
Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central
Pennsylvania lawyer specializing in nursing home abuse and
negligence. For more information on his practice, please visit our website.