NACDS provides recommendations for HHS’ Healthy People 2030 initiative

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NACDS provides recommendations for HHS’ Healthy People 2030 initiative

By Sandra Levy - 01/29/2019
The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has submitted comments with recommendations for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy People, or HP2030, initiative, which develops a new set of 10 year national objectives aimed at improving the health of all Americans.

NACDS’ comments highlight the role community pharmacy plays in public health, alongside other providers.

NACDS said that community pharmacists are advanced healthcare professionals with doctorate-level educations and, as a result of their training and accessibility, pharmacists are playing an increasingly vital role in healthcare delivery. NACDS said that “nine out of 10 Americans live within five miles of a community pharmacy,” noting that pharmacist interventions not only “improve patient health and outcomes, but also pharmacy care has been shown to save downstream healthcare dollars.”

“Community pharmacists are trusted and accessible healthcare professionals who serve as frontline providers of preventive and chronic care services. Through public policy, pharmacists can be empowered to practice to the full extent of their education for the ultimate better of patients in communities nationwide,” NACDS president and CEO Steve Anderson said. “NACDS is dedicated to helping advance population health, and we appreciate this important opportunity to shape the HP2030 framework, which will set the public health agenda for the coming decade.”

NACDS’ comments noted that there is potential for better aligning HP2030 objectives with existing initiatives at HHS and strengthening objectives to improve patient health and patient outcomes. NACDS recommended additional preventive care and chronic disease measures, and supported accessible, patient-centered care across settings.

NACDS pointed to “assessing how well the healthcare system is promoting providers, such as pharmacists practicing at the top of their profession and fostering cross-sector collaboration” to improve patient outcomes and reduce overall costs.

The organization urged HHS to strengthen such objectives as access to preventive services, increased immunization rates and chronic disease management.

"Pharmacies have become a major access point for immunizations for many Americans and have been shown to be a cost-effective healthcare setting for providing immunization services because of their proximity and available hours for services offered,” NACDS said.

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