December 21, 2020 Ashley Struble

Establishing Trust With Compassion and Kindness

From a Clinical Pharmacist -In March 2020, we had a new patient transferred to our UConn Health specialty Pharmacy who was suffering from Psoriatic arthritis and being treated with Humira. Shortly after her transfer to our pharmacy, her medication treatment was discontinued due to adverse side effects. Unfortunately, her doctor then switched her to Taltz, but insurance would not cover the new medication.

The patient’s insurance required her to try and fail five other medications before switching to Taltz. To help this patient receive approval for Taltz, our pharmacy liaison worked with the prescriber to get the drug manufacturer’s approval. The patient was finally able to get the medication through the Taltz Together program. While we still could not fill this medication for her, the patient felt comfortable enough to continue reaching out to the clinical team to ask questions about her new therapy.

Our clinical team performed a full initial assessment and reviewed drug administration, storage, excursion time, side effect profile, and time to benefit the patient and encouraged them to reach out with any continued concerns. The patient hoped that the provider could submit an appeal to transfer back to our specialty pharmacy at UConn Health.

This patient started to experience side effects after beginning therapy with Taltz and utilized our clinical line as an added layer of support and appreciated learning mitigation strategies that the team provided. Her provider then decided to switch her therapy to Cosentyx, but she, unfortunately, could still not fill her prescription with us at UConn Health and had to fill with an outside pharmacy even with this switch.

This patient continued to reach out to the UConn clinical team to go over proper injection techniques with this new therapy. The day after the first injection with Cosentyx, the patient called the clinical line to let us know that her injection went well and that she was super appreciative of the assistance the clinical team gave her.

Since the patient continued to inquire if our pharmacy could fill her medication, our pharmacy liaison re-ran claims every 14 days. Finally, her insurance approved her to fill the Cosentyx with UConn at the end of September.

One of the clinical pharmacists received a call from this patient after the pharmacy liaison notified the patient that she could fill with us. The patient expressed how happy she felt to be able to fill with our pharmacy. The pharmacist could hear the excitement in the patient’s voice. Despite having insurance restrictions, the UConn clinical team was always available to assist this patient throughout every step of her medication journey.

The UConn clinical team established a climate of trust by showing compassion and kindness very early on with this patient. The team also served as that ‘added layer of support’ that the patient needed throughout her care, which was the patient’s driving factor to stay under our care.