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A Valuable Partnership

By Paul Abramowitz posted 03-15-2013 14:39

As you may be aware, ASHP recently joined the Center for Pharmacy Practice Accreditation (CPPA) as a governing member. We believe that CPPA brings considerable value to pharmacy. Its voluntary accreditation standards will help drive improvements in patient care in and between all sites of care, and thus, will advance the profession of pharmacy.

Accreditation now exists for residency and technician training, schools of pharmacy, hospitals, clinics, and many other components of healthcare, education and delivery. Applying consistent standards in all of these areas have resulted in marked improvements in quality. Recognizing that the breadth and complexity of the medication-use process calls for a more detailed level of focus to ensure consistent quality outcomes, we believe there is a need for a single integrated accreditation body, with strong medication-use knowledge and experience to identify and sustain these improvements. This is why ASHP joined the CPPA.

As a full partner in the CPPA, ASHP envisions a patient-centered, comprehensive approach to accrediting the medication-use process in various health care settings. The organization’s first goal is to start with community pharmacies that are not presently accredited and later expand its efforts to accredit other practice sites, to ensure a continuum of care, which focuses on the patient’s complete therapy from start to finish. Thus, we hope to close the gaps present today between sites of care wherever medications are prescribed, dispensed, or administered. Joining the CPPA will also help to significantly convey to patients and stakeholders our commitment to better patient care.

Further, we are happy to report that on March 1, 2013, the CPPA released its Community Pharmacy Practice Accreditation Standards with interpretive narrative. Within the standards, the Center identified three domains that reflect the overarching purpose of community pharmacy practice accreditation. They are: a) practice management, b) patient care services, and c) quality improvement. We also expect these standards and the future work of the CPPA will greatly help to ensure better, more effective transitions of care.

Structurally, the CPPA is managed by a board of directors that consists of nine voting members, to include chief executive officers from APhA, NABP and ASHP, and six appointed directors (two from each partner organization). ASHP’s two board members are Roger W. Anderson, Dr.P.H., R.Ph. and Daniel M. Ashby, M.S., FASHP. ASHP Past-President Lynnae Mahaney, B.S. Pharm, M.B.A., FASHP, is the CPPA’s new executive director. She is responsible for overseeing the Center’s business and organizational affairs. The CPPA also has two standing committees: a Standards Oversight Committee, which coordinates the development of consensus-based standards, and an Accreditation Process Oversight Committee, which coordinates the development and implementation of the accreditation process. Both committees will have equal representation from ASHP, APhA, and NABP. To learn more about the CPPA and its efforts, we encourage you to visit its website, where you will also find answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

In summary, our hope is that CPPA will contribute to the improvement of patient care through voluntary accreditation of all facets of the continuum of the medication-use process. Our goal is to ensure quality and safety for every patient who takes medications, throughout their lives.

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