This is the tenth in a series of articles from the National Center for Excellence in Primary Care Research (NCEPCR) in the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). This series introduces sets of tools and resources designed to help your practice.
An important part of self-management (last month’s article) is medication management, often augmented by the use of a portal and always cognizant of the importance of medication reconciliation and drug interactions. These latter issues can be addressed with health information technology (health IT), which will be discussed the next two columns. This month, we examine some of AHRQ’s other tools and resources to assist with medication management.
Patient understanding of the medications and medication schedule is important, and therefore health literacy key. Thecan help primary care practices reduce the complexity of health care, increase patient understanding of health information, and enhance support for patients of all health literacy levels. Also available are the companion guide, , and a crosswalk showing how implementing health literacy tools can help meet standards for patient-centered medical home certification or recognition or meet Accreditation Canada standards.
Finally,helps users create an easy-to-use “pill card” for anyone who has a hard time keeping track of their medicines. Step-by-step instructions, sample clip art, and suggestions for design and use will help to customize a reminder card.
These and other tools can be found at the NCEPCR Web site:.
Dr. Ganiats is director of the National Center for Excellence in Primary Care Research at AHRQ, Rockville, Md.