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Clinical pharmacists have added value to family medicine practices for decades. Postgraduate residency training and board certification are recommended for pharmacists in clinical and educational roles. Clinical pharmacists contribute to interprofessional health care teams by providing comprehensive medication management to ensure that drugs are safe, effective, and appropriate for the patients’ conditions. Roles of such pharmacists include patient care, education, research, and administration. When incorporating a clinical pharmacist into a family medicine practice, it is critical to identify the needs, priorities, and roles of all health care team members. In the recruiting of a clinical pharmacist, candidates should be identified whose vision and values align with that of the practice. Finally, the effects of integration of the clinical pharmacist into the practice should be measured. Clinical pharmacists contribute to each goal of the Quadruple Aim, in addition to improved clinical, economic, and humanistic outcomes in the inpatient and outpatient settings. Although financial barriers may affect integration, many billing mechanisms have been implemented successfully by pharmacy practices for face-to-face and telehealth patient visits. Value-based reimbursement models support the inclusion of clinical pharmacists in the interprofessional health care team.

Case 1. Members of your practice are discussing strategies to improve patient safety and outcomes. Recently, a patient from the practice was hospitalized due to a drug interaction that resulted in acute kidney injury. Another patient experienced an adverse event attributed to his drugs. One of your partners says that when she was a resident, a clinical pharmacist in that practice helped with drug management. She recalls that the team approach to patient care optimized therapeutic outcomes, improved patient and physician satisfaction, and promoted safe and cost-effective drug use. She asks if a similar model could work in your practice.

Clinical pharmacists have been involved in family medicine practices for decades.1 As defined by the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP), clinical pharmacists care for patients in any practice setting by applying scientific evidence, addressing societal factors, and assuming responsibility and accountability for therapy.2 The ACCP further delineated core competencies for clinical pharmacists, including direct patient care, pharmacotherapy knowledge, systems-based care and population health, communication, professionalism, and continuing professional development.3 These expectations allow clinical pharmacists to bring added value to a family medicine team.

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