Mayez Hijazi is a qualified Pharmacist and Medicine Review Specialist at Claims Pharmacy. Learn more about him in our spotlight interview.
Why is it important to review medication?
A medication review is an essential component of any claim. A discussion into a claimant’s medication regimen in collaboration with the treating GP contributes towards the quality of care and optimisation of medications. Adhering to therapeutic guidelines which dictate treatment duration, dosages and indication should be incorporated into every medication plan. This will deter medication misuse, dependency issues and ensure the claimant attains the most use out of their medications.
Ultimately, pharmaceutical rationalisation will assist with recovery and promote functionality and enable a successful transition into the workforce.
What challenges do you face in reviewing medications and how do you overcome them?
There are various challenges which usually develop during the review process, including:
- Unwillingness of the GP to rationalise medications. This is usually overcome through a basic discussion into the limitations and ongoing risks associated with medication use, specifically with regards to addictive medications. This may also require contact with the claimant’s specialist in order to establish a down titration plan alongside the GP.
- Long term relationship between the GP and claimant making it difficult to initiate change. Providing my recommendation in a report form to the treating GP to discuss with the claimant gives the GP the confidence to initiate change.
- Miscommunication between the treating practitioners in terms of medication usage which can usually lead to duplication of therapy, overdose, and mismanagement. Holding an open case conference with all treating practitioners with the aim of establishing an appropriate medication regime and seeking appropriate long-term options which are both appropriate and safe.
Describe the impact you and your review have on the changing outcomes for injured people.
I see myself as part of the claimants allied health team and am usually engaged throughout the claim in establishing, monitoring, and following up on an agreed medication management plan. The main goal is to influence change. My impact circles around minimising adverse effects of medications via ensuring the use of effective dosages and the cessation of addictive medications. This ultimately promotes recovery and assists the claimant throughout their road to recovery.
I also promote the quality use of medicines by assisting the case manager in better understanding a claimant’s medications as well as enhancing communication between all practitioners which contributes towards the continuity of care in a claim. Whilst doctors are experts in disease states and prescribing, it is all too common that many WorkCover patients fall into a vicious cycle of continuous prescribing which delays recovery and increases chronicity. My impact aims to break this cycle by empowering the prescriber to implement change by addressing inappropriate and many a times excessive medication use.
How has Claims Pharmacy grown during your time here?
I have been working at Claims Pharmacy for 3 years. Claims Pharmacy has always had an interest in medication management and how to best address medication use and devise a plan for optimisation.
More recently, Claims Pharmacy has transitioned towards providing a program to injured workers to assist with infirmed choices about their medication usage. We also now have a strong focus towards how medications can affect return to work goals and participation through rehabilitation services.
What do you feel is the most important thing people should know about Claims Pharmacy?
We at Claims Pharmacy have a genuine concern on medication use and the need to address issues through the prescriber. Claims Pharmacy provides the insurer with a guide towards medication use which assists them with better understanding the claimant. What many do not realise is that while GPs understand medications, Pharmacists have a unique role in assessing drug-drug interactions, drug-condition interaction and adherence to guidelines involving dosage and timeframe of use.
Using the latest therapeutic guidelines and best practice standards, we present a new, fresh outlook on the claim which involves providing the GP with confidence to address medication issues with their patient through our recommendations and report findings.
At Claims Pharmacy, our goal is to ensure the safe and quality use of medications and contribute towards the recovery of a claimant. It really is that simple.