As February’s American Heart Month comes to a close, it’s important to remember the important role pharmacists can play in improving heart health. The American Heart Association estimates the cost of cardiovascular disease will be $1.1 trillion in 2035. But because 91% of American live within five miles of a community pharmacy, this alarming projection could be resolved with the help of pharmacists.
As National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) President and CEO Steve Anderson points out in an opinion piece on Medium, pharmacists are proactive healthcare partners, well-positioned to provide heart disease prevention and management services like testing for high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes. Pharmacists also provide education to their patients and improve medication adherence. But because of regulatory challenges, pharmacists are not recognized as healthcare providers and are often not reimbursed for their services.
With the help of public opinion supporting an expanded role for pharmacists in healthcare, pharmacists are ready to work towards a heart-healthy solution for their patients. “Pharmacies are a part of the solution in helping Americans prevent, manage and improve their heart health outcomes.”