Excelling in diabetes management, care


From left to right: Sean Allman, Clarrisa Wallace, Kristy Solominksy, Deborah DeYoung and Sonia Borja

For the pharmacists working at Albertsons/Safeway, few things are as important as ensuring that their patients get the best care.

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Five pharmacists at the company’s Randalls supermarkets in Austin, Texas, for example, have dedicated themselves to diabetes management. Since February 2013, the pharmacists — Clarissa Wallace, Kristy Solominsky, Deborah DeYoung, Sonia Borja and Sal Solis — have been working closely with the city of Austin, insurer United Healthcare and Austin-based Seton Hospital to help municipal employees learn how to manage their diabetes.

Under the collaborative-care program, city workers are given the flexibility to choose appointment dates and times that fit their schedules. In addition, the pharmacists participate in periodic city-run wellness events where they provide diabetes screenings and get eligible patients enrolled in United Healthcare’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance program.

After completing an eight-hour class offered by Seton Hospital’s Center for Diabetes Education, patients see one of the Randalls pharmacists between four and six times over the next year, and their HgA1c and lipid levels are tested. In addition, the pharmacists work with patients to set achievable and measurable goals specific to each person’s individual needs. Since the program’s inception, more than 500 Austin employees have made more than 2,000 visits to the Randalls diabetes specialists.

Earlier this year, the healthcare providers met to evaluate the program’s progress, finding that hospitalizations and emergency room visits among city workers had declined dramatically, and medication adherence had spiked.

In another example of Albertsons/Safeway pharmacists’ total commitment to their patients, Sean Allman, who joined the company two years ago as Safeway’s director of pharmacy, has spearheaded a variety of clinical projects and educational programs in California.

Allman, who also is an adjunct faculty member at California Northstate University College of Pharmacy in Sacramento and a preceptor for students there and at the University of California San Francisco and at nearby Tuoro University’s College of Pharmacy, has worked closely with other faculty members at these schools to help students develop the skills they need to operate in the real world.

“Not only is Sean an effective role model for pharmacy students, he also works well with patients and staff members,” a Safeway spokeswoman said, noting Allman’s efforts to provide a Mirixa clinical platform, a variety of medication therapy management programs, biometric screenings and flu clinics, and his plans to develop a travel health program for Safeway stores.

In addition, she noted that Allman is working to widen the scope of the services he provides patients — working to become an accredited diabetes educator and completing several programs that will see him become accredited as an HIV pharmacist.

Outside of Safeway, Allman has been involved in numerous community events, including the Annual Family Health Fair in San Francisco, which this month will offer 100 visitors free flu shots, and a 2014 presentation at the San Francisco Senior Center on the benefits of the Zostavax shingles vaccine.

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