Advancing Health Literacy Practices in Pharmacy through Quality Improvement—Part I

Slide Deck 3

Four PowerPoint® slide decks have been created for use in pharmacy courses. Each of the slide decks includes sufficient content for a 50-minute class, and can be used independently or with the other slide decks.

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Advancing Health Literacy Practices in Pharmacy through Quality Improvement—Part I

Curricular Modules for Pharmacy Faculty

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Overview

  • Quality problems in health care.
  • Health literacy quality improvement:
    • Assessing pharmacy health literacy practices.
    • Exploring potential solutions.
    • Studying the solutions and implementing effective strategies.
  • Lessons from the field.

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Health Literacy as a Quality Issue

  • The mismatch between the health system demands on patients and patients' health literacy skills is a quality issue with opportunities for improvement.
  • Pharmacists and pharmacies have a role in improving quality.

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Quality in Health Care

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Quality in Health Care

Evidence of quality problems:

  • Institute of Medicine (IOM) To Err is Human (1999):
    • Preventable medical errors caused 44K-98K preventable deaths each year with an associated cost of $17 - $29 billion.
  • IOM Crossing the Quality Chasm (2001):
    • "Health care harms patients too frequently and routinely fails to deliver its potential benefits. Indeed, between the health care that we now have and the health care that we could have lies not just a gap, but a chasm."

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Quality in Health Care (cont'd)

Evidence of quality problems in medication use:

  • Drug-related morbidity and mortality:
    • $76.6 billion (Johnson & Bootman, 1995).
    • $177.4 billion (Ernst & Grizzle, 2001).
  • IOM Report on Medication Errors (2006):
    • 1.5 million preventable ADEs in United States per year.

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Quality in Health Care (cont'd)

  • Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA):
    • Established in 2006.
    • Supports development of measures of the quality of medication use.
    • Demonstration projects:
  • Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (2010):
    • National Strategy for Quality Improvement in Health Care.

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Quality Improvement (QI)

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Quality Improvement (QI)

  • Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) is a model for carrying out change to improve quality.
    • Also known as:
      • Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA).
      • Deming cycle.
      • Shewhart cycle.

Source: Deming WE. The New Economics for Industry, Government, and Education. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press; 2000.

Image: The Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle is represented by a circle divided into 4 equal sections with two arrows at the center pointing at each other in a continuous circle.

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Quality Improvement (QI) (cont'd)

First, must identify ideas for change or change concepts by answering the questions:

  1. What are we trying to accomplish?
  2. How will we know a change is an improvement?
  3. What changes can we make that will result in improvement?

Source: American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. The Pharmacist's Role in Quality Improvement. Accessed at: http://www.ashp.org/DocLibrary/Policy/QII/RoleinQI.aspx.

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Plan-Do-Study-Act

  • Plan: Determine tasks needed to assess change, and predict what will happen:
    • Who will implement the plan?
    • What exactly will they do?
    • When, where, and how long will they do it?
    • What do you predict will happen and how will you know?

Sources: 1) ASHP, 2) Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-0046-EF. 3) Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) PDSA Worksheet for Testing Change.

Image: The Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle is represented by a circle divided into 4 equal sections with two arrows at the center pointing at each other in a continuous circle. The section captioned "Plan" is broken slightly away from the other sections.

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Plan-Do-Study-Act (cont'd)

  • Do:
    • Execute your plan.
    • Collect data to measure change.
    • Observe what happens:
      • How did pharmacists, staff, patients react?
      • How did the change fit into pharmacy processes?
      • Did you have to modify the plan?
    • Identify unexpected problems.

Sources: 1) ASHP and, 2) Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-0046-EF. 3) Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) PDSA Worksheet for Testing Change.

Image: The Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle is represented by a circle divided into 4 equal sections with two arrows at the center pointing at each other in a continuous circle. The section captioned "Do" is broken slightly away from the other sections.

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Plan-Do-Study-Act (cont'd)

  • Study:
    • Study the effect of the change.
    • Describe the results and how they compared to the predictions.
    • Did you meet the goal?
    • What did you learn?

Sources: 1) American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. The Pharmacist's Role in Quality Improvement. Accessed at: http://www.ashp.org/DocLibrary/Policy/QII/RoleinQI.aspx; 2) Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-0046-EF. 3) Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) PDSA Worksheet for Testing Change.

Image: The Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle is represented by a circle divided into 4 equal sections with two arrows at the center pointing at each other in a continuous circle. The section captioned "Study" is broken slightly away from the other sections.

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Plan-Do-Study-Act (cont'd)

  • Act:
    • Describe what modifications to the plan will be made for the next cycle from what you learned.
    • What did you conclude from this cycle?
    • If it did not work, what can you do differently in your next cycle?

Sources: 1) American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. The Pharmacist's Role in Quality Improvement. Accessed at: http://www.ashp.org/DocLibrary/Policy/QII/RoleinQI.aspx; 2) Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-0046-EF. 3) Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) PDSA Worksheet for Testing Change.

Image: The Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle is represented by a circle divided into 4 equal sections with two arrows at the center pointing at each other in a continuous circle. The section captioned "Act" is broken slightly away from the other sections.

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Keep in Mind

  • Single step:
    • Each PDSA usually contains only a segment or single step of the entire QI implementation.
  • Short duration:
    • Each PDSA cycle should be as brief as possible to gain the knowledge of whether it is working or not. (can be as short as 1 hour).
  • Small sample size:
    • PDSA may only involve a portion of the pharmacy or practice. Once refined, implementation of the change can be broadened.

Source: Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. AHRQ Pub. No. 10-0046-EF.

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Keep in Mind (cont'd)

  • Make the case for QI:
    • Change is hard.
    • Convincing decision-makers is key.
    • Organizational buy-in is important.
    • Need resources.
  • Recruit a team:
    • A 'change champion'.
    • Supporting roles.

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Example QI Projects

Examples from pharmacy (PQA, EPIQ curriculum)

  • Decrease medication errors by increasing patient counseling on warfarin prescriptions.
  • Detection and prevention of medication errors using the "show and tell" counseling method.
  • Implementing methods for allergy documentation in a chain pharmacy.

Examples from medicine (Ogrinc et al. 2010)

  • Assess process and barriers for patients to receive antibiotics within one hour of presentation to ED.
  • Offer flu vaccine to pregnant women presenting to OB.

Sources: 1) Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA) EPIQ Curriculum. 2) Ogrinc G, Nierenberg and DW, Batalden PW. Building Experiential Learning about Quality Improvement Into A Medical School Curriculum: The Dartmouth Experience. Health Affairs, 30, no.4 (2011):716-722. Accessed at: http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/30/4/716.full.pdf+html.

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Health Literacy Quality Improvement (QI)

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Health Literacy QI

  • There are several potential challenges that patients with limited health literacy may encounter at the pharmacy or practices that may pose obstacles:
    • Limited staff awareness of health literacy.
    • Poor signage.
    • High-level written materials.
    • Poor communication practices.
    • Limited use of strategies to support patient comprehension.

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Health Literacy QI (cont'd)

  • There are several opportunities to improve the health literacy practices of pharmacists, staff, and pharmacies:
    • Assess pharmacy health literacy practices.
    • Identify potential problems.
    • Explore and study potential solutions.
    • Implement effective strategies.

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Assessing Pharmacy Health Literacy Practices

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Health Literacy Assessment of Pharmacy

  • A pharmacy health literacy assessment tool was developed by Jacobson et al to:
    • Raise staff awareness of health literacy.
    • Detect barriers.
    • Identify opportunities for improvement.
    • Potentially provide baseline assessment prior to implementing an intervention.

Source: Jacobson KL, Gazmararian JA, Kripalanie S, McMorris KJ, Blake SC, Brach C. Is Our Pharmacy Meeting Patients' Needs? A Pharmacy Health Literacy Assessment Tool User's Guide. (Prepared under contract No. 290-00-0011 TO). AHRQ Publication No. 07-0051. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: October 2007.

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Health Literacy Assessment of Pharmacy (cont'd)

  • The assessment tool was designed to capture three critical perspectives and has three corresponding parts:
    • Part I: A pharmacy assessment tour to be completed by objective, trained auditors.
    • Part II: A survey to be completed by pharmacy staff.
    • Part III: A guide for focus groups with pharmacy patients.

Source: Jacobson KL, et al. (2007).

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Case: Bella Pharmacy

  • 340B community health center pharmacy.
  • Serves low-income, limited-English proficiency, racial/ethnic minority patients.
  • Pharmacy wanted to assess its health literacy practices:
    • Used the Pharmacy Health Literacy Assessment Tool.

Source: Shoemaker SJ, Wasserman M, Staub-DeLong L. Understanding facilitators and barriers to quality improvement (QI) adoption and implementation in pharmacies: Results from an AHRQ health literacy QI study in pharmacies. American Pharmacists Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA. March 2011.

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Case: Bella Pharmacy (cont'd)

  • Part I: Assessment Tour of Pharmacy:
    • Print Materials:
      • Materials available in Spanish.
      • Some materials were <12 point font.
    • Clear Verbal Communication:
      • Avoidance of medical jargon.
      • Did not offer interpreter over the phone.

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Case: Bella Pharmacy (cont'd)

  • Part II: Pharmacy Staff Survey:
    • Pharmacy is doing well:
      • Pharmacy does have private consultation area.
      • Pharmacy offers materials in Spanish.
    • Pharmacy is not doing well:
      • Staff have not received health literacy training.
      • Staff don't know informal indicators.
    • Opportunities for improvement:
      • Use the 'teach-back' method.
      • Distribute literacy-appropriate education materials to patients.
      • Provide health literacy training to staff.

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Case: Bella Pharmacy (cont'd)

  • Part III: Patient Focus Groups (FG):
    • Conduct FGs in English and Spanish.
    • Patients' suggestions for improvement:
      • Use larger font size.
      • Warn patients of last refill.
      • Include illustrations on drug information pamphlet such as indication and product image or imprint.

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Case: Bella Pharmacy (cont'd)

  • Bella Pharmacy assessed their health literacy practices, allowing them to identify issues and consider potential solutions.
  • They developed a list of recommendations:
    • Remind patients of number of refills.
    • Identify appropriate images for patient education materials.
    • Employ "teach-back".
    • Educate staff of failure to understand.

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References

  • American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. The Pharmacist's Role in Quality Improvement. Accessed at: http://www.ashp.org/DocLibrary/Policy/QII/RoleinQI.aspx.
  • Deming WE. The New Economics for Industry, Government, and Education. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press; 2000.
  • DeWalt DA, Callahan LF, Hawk VH, Broucksou KA, Hink A, Rudd R, Brach C. Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit. (Prepared by North Carolina Network Consortium, The Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, under Contract No. HHSA290200710014.) AHRQ Publication No. 10-0046-EF) Rockville, MD. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. April 2010.
  • Ernst, FR, Grizzle, AJ. Drug-related morbidity and mortality: updating the cost-of-illness model. J Am Pharm Assoc 2001 Mar-Apr;41(2):192-9.
  • Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) PDSA Worksheet for Testing Change. http://www.ihi.org/knowledge/Pages/Tools/PlanDoStudyActWorksheet.aspx.
  • Institute of Medicine, "Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the Twenty-first Century"(Washington: National Academy Press, 2001).
  • Institute of Medicine, "Preventing Medication Errors: Quality Chasm Series". (Washington: National Academy Press, 2006).

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References (cont'd)

  • Jacobson KL, Gazmararian JA, Kripalanie S, McMorris KJ, Blake SC, Brach C. Is Our Pharmacy Meeting Patients' Needs? A Pharmacy Health Literacy Assessment Tool User's Guide. (Prepared under contract No. 290-00-0011 TO7.) AHRQ Publication No. 07-0051. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Oct 2007.
  • Johnson JA, Bootman JL. Drug-related morbidity and mortality: a cost-of-illness model. Arch Int Med.1995;155:1949-56.
  • Kohn L T, Corrigan J M., Donaldson MS (Institute of Medicine) To err is human: building a safer health system. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2000.
  • Ogrinc G, Nierenberg and DW, Batalden PW. Building Experiential Learning about Quality Improvement Into A Medical School Curriculum: The Dartmouth Experience. Health Affairs 30, no.4 (2011):716-722.
  • Pharmacy Quality Alliance . (2009). Educating Pharmacy Students and Pharmacists to Improve Quality (EPIQ). Accessed at: http://www.pqaalliance.org/files/EPIQ-Flyer_MAR2010.pdf.
  • Shoemaker SJ, Wasserman M, Staub-DeLong L. Understanding facilitators and barriers to quality improvement (QI) adoption and implementation in pharmacies: Results from an AHRQ health literacy QI study in pharmacies. American Pharmacists Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA. March 2011.
  • Warholak TL, Nau DP. (2010). Quality and safety in pharmacy practice. McGraw-Hill; New York, NY.

Return to Document

Current as of December 2011
Internet Citation: Advancing Health Literacy Practices in Pharmacy through Quality Improvement—Part I: Slide Deck 3. December 2011. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/professionals/education/curriculum-tools/pharmlitqi/slidedeck3/slidedeck3.html