ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The University of Michigan Health System has established a new affiliation with CVS Health to continue to improve the health care experience for patients.
Through the affiliation, CVS Health will share prescription and MinuteClinic (the retail medical clinic of CVS Health) visit information with U-M Health System providers by enabling communication between their secured electronic medical record systems. For example, with the patient's consent, a MinuteClinic provider can view the patient's U-M medical record and will electronically share patient visit summaries with the patient's U-M Health System provider.
In addition, U-M Health System providers will receive data on interventions conducted by CVS pharmacists to improve medication adherence.
This enhanced information sharing between the two organizations will improve the coordination of care for U-M patients who use CVS pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations nationwide.
"We're always searching for new opportunities to provide our patients with the absolute best patient care possible," says David Spahlinger, M.D., executive associate dean for clinical affairs at U-M Medical School and president, U-M Hospitals. "This affiliation presents us with a unique opportunity to collaborate with CVS health care providers and enhance our system of care for our patients to better meet their needs."
The two organizations recently worked together on a pilot project. The project allowed for collaboration between selected CVS pharmacists and U-M Health System providers in Ann Arbor to improve chronic disease management of U-M patients in the local community. Building on the lessons learned from the pilot, the two organizations are exploring other opportunities to engage community pharmacists in direct patient care.
"We have patients with chronic diseases who may visit the pharmacy multiple times a month," Spahlinger says. "The opportunity for enhanced communication between a patient's pharmacist and health care provider could make managing their health care easier and ensure patients get the right care at the right time."
CVS Health has more than 9,500 retail pharmacy locations across the U.S. and more than 1,100 MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics, including 17 in Michigan, at the retail pharmacy locations. MinuteClinics are open seven days a week, offering evening hours with no appointment necessary and most health insurance is accepted. The clinics are staffed by nurse practitioners and/or physician assistants who provide treatment for common illnesses and administer wellness and prevention services, including health-condition monitoring for patients with chronic diseases.
"Our patients are looking for convenience, and we think CVS Health can help us provide that, while also ensuring our patients continue to receive the high-quality care they're accustomed to receiving from U-M physicians," Spahlinger says.