TRC 101: The Basics of Clinical Specialization

TRC 101: The Basics of Clinical Specialization

On the phone with patients or behind the scenes reviewing prescriptions, specialist pharmacists and nurses in the Therapeutic Resource Centers (TRCs) put into action each day a type of pharmacy practice that sets Accredo apart. Here is a primer on the clinical specialization that Accredo employs to drive better health outcomes for patients with specialty conditions.

The TRCs care for patients with the most complex and costly conditions.
Specialist pharmacists and nurses use their disease-specific experience to ensure safety, improve medication adherence and close gaps in care. Pharmacists, nurses, and staff specialize in numerous chronic and complex disease categories, including:

  • Bleeding disorders
  • Hepatitis C
  • HIV/Immunology
  • Immune disorders
  • Inflammatory conditions
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Oncology
  • Orphan and ultra-orphan conditions
  • Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH)

Patients are assigned to a TRC according to their most complex illness.
Assignments are based on information included in prescriptions Accredo processes as well as other available information, such as medical claims data. When a patient calls Accredo and needs to speak with a specialist pharmacist, the call is routed according to the patient’s TRC assignment.

TRC pharmacists and clinicians participate in specialized training.
Each specialist pharmacist and nurse receives disease-specific training and ongoing education, and many pharmacists have advanced certification in one of these categories.

In addition, many are trained in motivational interviewing techniques to enhance the communication experience and clinical outcome for the member. Accredo specialists are trained to create a comfortable environment in which patients can share information. This helps establish a relationship and allows the patient to be more open to the adherence solutions that specialists offer.

Pharmacists in the TRC work behind the scenes to ensure patient safety and prescription accuracy.
Prescriptions are checked throughout the dispensing process. Specialist pharmacists in the TRC play a critical role in this process. Their disease state and drug-specific knowledge allows them to quickly identify inaccurate doses and possible drug interactions. TRC pharmacists proactively engage physicians when there is a question regarding a prescription.

Specialized clinicians drive better patient outcomes.
Nurses in each TRC utilize proprietary programs to encourage patient adherence through proactive outreach. Clinicians engage patients at key milestones in each disease state and tailor advice based on patient-specific adherence barriers.

Clinical specialization leads to higher adherence.
Patients enrolled in Accredo’s TRCs frequently have better adherence than those patients who receive their prescription through a retail pharmacy. One study demonstrated that adherence rates for Accredo patients with MS are 32% higher than patients with MS who fill at retail.1

Clinical specialization and corresponding high-touch services can play a key role in channel management strategies. To customize their approach to product access, manufacturers should assess the specialization needs of unique patient sets. The specialists in Accredo’s TRCs partner with UBC experts to create custom manufacturer-sponsored programs for patients. Contact us to learn more about the TRC model and discover how it can support your patients.

1Results presented at the 15th Annual International Society of Pharmacoeconomic Outcomes Research Meeting, Atlanta, GA, May 2010. Medco book of business Health Outcomes Solutions analysis, 2007 data, 2008 analysis.