Innovations in medicine hit home: How Walgreens is helping patients take hospital care home
Courtesy Walgreens, North Atlanta LIVING WELL Magazine
Times—and medications—are changing fast. As healthcare continues to advance, more drugs will be delivered by infusion. That’s a term used to describe drug delivery that goes directly into the body via a small tube usually inserted into a vein, rather than in a pill or liquid taken by mouth. Hospitals often give medicines by infusion…and now many patients continue to receive infusion therapy after coming home, thanks to specialized Walgreens infusion services.
|Derek Q had been hospitalized with a serious gastrointestinal condition for more than a week. He was feeling better, well enough to go home in fact, except he still needed infusions of medication.That’s when his physician recommended that Walgreens infusion services treat him conveniently at home…|
Most people think of Walgreens as a leading retail pharmacy in the U.S., and it is. What people may not know is that Walgreens offers numerous health-related support services that go far beyond the store itself. This includes Walgreens infusion services, which provide state-of-the-art infusion care by highly qualified infusion nurses and pharmacists.
As the #1 provider of home infusion services in the nation, every year Walgreens helps patients receive the therapy they need—comfortably and conveniently. Such services allow patients to maintain a sense of independence during medical treatment.
Walgreens experienced infusion professionals treat many different conditions. These are some of the more common ones:
- Pain management
- Multiple sclerosis
- Heart disease (advanced)
- Malnutrition and dehydration
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Immunodeficiency disorders
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Neurological disorders
- Bleeding disorders
Whatever the condition, working with Walgreens infusion experts results in tangible benefits for the patient and caregiver. Typically, those who receive Walgreens infusion services are up to six times less likely to be readmitted to the hospital. There are other benefits too: home infusion therapy generally saves money for both the patient and the insurance company, keeping costs lower than in-hospital care.
|Before Derek was discharged, Walgreens Pharmacy Services coordinated his medication requirements and made sure his treatment plan was in place. Derek’s wife, Suzy, was relieved that the pharmacist was so helpful and explained everything clearly.|
Preparing to transfer to home infusion usually begins while the patient is still in the hospital. The doctor will order Walgreens health services to extend care from the hospital to the patient’s home. At this time, Walgreens multidisciplinary healthcare team creates an individualized care plan for the patient and makes sure it can be integrated into his or her everyday life. Pharmacist services, in keeping with Walgreens legacy, are the foundation of this team approach. The pharmacists are responsible for ensuring that patients have the necessary medications during their hospital stay, at discharge, and throughout their treatment at home. Services include home drug delivery, nursing administration of drugs, and patient education.
Not everyone chooses to receive infusions at home. Patients who are active or mobile may prefer to go to a Walgreens infusion suite or Specialty Care Center®. Working patients can receive infusions at their workplaces. Essentially, whatever a person’s infusion needs, Walgreens can meet them, arranging services in the most appropriate setting for the patient’s work and lifestyle.
This level of service is available throughout the U.S. When a patient travels—on vacation, for instance, or a business trip—he or she has uninterrupted access to Walgreens quality medications, care, and services. Walgreens has a large national network of 900 specially trained and technology-savvy infusion nurses, supported by Walgreens infusion pharmacists, experienced dietitians, reimbursement experts and other healthcare professionals. Additionally, Walgreens infusion staff is available to answers questions and concerns 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
|Once Derek was back at home, he received a visit from a Walgreens infusion nurse, Marcie. She demonstrated to Derek and Suzy how to self-infuse his medications, teaching the procedure slowly and carefully, step by step. Derek and Suzy found Marcie’s kind and competent care educational, easy to follow…and reassuring. Now, Marcie continues to monitor Derek’s progress. And he’s doing well!|
For more information about Walgreens services in Atlanta:
Walgreens Infusion Services
808 Park North Boulevard
Toll free phone: 888-647-1536
Walgreens Healthcare Systems Pharmacies located at:
Atlanta Medical Center
340 Boulevard N.E., #143
35 Collier Road N.W. #100
DeKalb Medical Center
2675 N. Decatur Road