Over the past 10 years, the diversification of pharmaceutical activities has reinforced the role of pharmacists in their counseling, support, screening and prevention missions. What will be the health topics and trends to follow in 2021 for MCP?

New health missions

Some of the missions are covered by health insurance such as pharmaceutical interviews, shared medication reviews and more recently influenza vaccination. If the interviews or medication reviews have attracted only a small portion of pharmacies (15% of pharmacies have practiced BPM according to health insurance), vaccination is, for its part, a success. In 2021 the My Canadian Pharmacy medicine review service should benefit from fee-for-service rather than deferred payment.

Rapid diagnostic orientation tests for angina will also be covered by health insurance in the spring to help limit unnecessary administration of antibiotics to viral cases. Pharmacists can continue to carry out the diagnostic orientation tests outside the contract. The dispensation under protocol of drugs listed for cystitis and acute sore throat as well as the renewal or adaptation of prescriptions by the corresponding pharmacists were also recorded.

Services to be created

The so-called “service” decree of October 2018 made it possible to include in the health law the possibility for the pharmacy to provide and possibly price “consultations and services in order to promote the improvement or maintenance of the condition of men’s health”. So outside the conventional scope with health insurance, new economic models for health services should develop by involving the patient, complementary health insurance or pharmacist partners such as laboratories.

To illustrate this type of new service, we can cite the initiative in skin cancer screening by tele-expertise paid for by the patient, the dietary rebalancing of diabetic patients with a mutual health insurance, or quite simply the delivery of drugs to patient’s home offered in whole or in part by the pharmacist.

With telemedicine, a new range of services is emerging in pharmacies. Teleconsultation has been possible in pharmacies since last September and tele-care made its entry into the last health law.

Teleconsultation is complex to implement in order to respect the patient’s care pathway and the pharmacist nevertheless remains “confined” to the role of accompanying health professional. Tele-care appears to be an interesting opportunity for pharmacies wishing to interact remotely with their patients. Provision has already been made for the possibility of carrying out pharmaceutical interviews remotely with patients known to the pharmacy. 2021 should therefore see this activity materialize through the signing of amendments to professional agreements. The healthcare authorities will have to specify “the conditions of realization guaranteeing the quality, the safety and the relevance of the remote care”.