On behalf of the Awards and Recognition Committee of the Rhode Island Pharmacists Association (RIPA), Dr. Martin Kerzer recently received the RIPA Professional Service Award. Dr. Kerzer received this honor due to his innovative ideas on communicating with pharmacies to improve patient safety.
Dr Kerzer has a passion for improving patient care and how parts of the healthcare system work with each other. He is a firm believer in quality improvement and enhanced communications. In the summer of 2015, he asked me how could we improve the communications between the practice and the community pharmacists? With that simple question we started a pilot project with three CVS pharmacies. It was as simple as providing an electronic medication list to the pharmacy. We found that the number of calls from and to the pharmacies decreased due to having a complete, accurate medication list. From that pilot project, the program has expanded to all pharmacies. This has facilitated communications from local, retail pharmacists in a new way. They are giving us feedback about patients, barriers to adherence, and simply more information about what is truly going on with the patient. And the pharmacists are excited to be engaged in this new way to talk to the practice. I know this program is improving the patient care we all provide and helping to keep patients safe with their medications. Most of all, it is improving the relationship and communications between this practice and the community pharmacies as it takes a village to improve healthcare. Dr Kerzer has a respect for pharmacists and how we are an important partner in the healthcare team.