Background: Glycemic goals (hemoglobin A1c < 7%) are often not achieved in patients with type 2 diabetes despite the availability of many effective treatments and the documented benefits of glycemic control in the reduction of long-term microvascular and macrovascular complications. Several studies have established the important positive effects of pharmacist-led management on achieving glycemic control and other clinical outcomes in patients with diabetes. Diabetes prevalence and mortality are increasing rapidly in Jordan. Nevertheless, clinical pharmacists in Jordan do not typically provide pharmaceutical care; instead, the principal responsibilities of pharmacists in Jordan are dispensing and marketing of medical products to physicians.
Objective: To assess the primary clinical outcome of glycemic control (A1c) and secondary outcomes, including blood pressure, lipid values, self-reported medication adherence, and self-care activities for patients with type 2 diabetes in an outpatient diabetes clinic randomly assigned to either usual care or a pharmacist-led pharmaceutical care intervention program.
Methods: Patients with type 2 diabetes attending an outpatient diabetes clinic of a large teaching hospital were recruited over a 4-month period from January through April 2011 and randomly assigned to intervention and usual care groups using the Minim software technique. The intervention group at baseline received face-to-face objective-directed education from a clinical pharmacist about type 2 diabetes, prescription medications, and necessary lifestyle changes, followed by 8 weekly telephone follow-up calls to discuss and review the prescribed treatment plan and to resolve any patient concerns. The primary outcome measure was glycemic control (A1c), and secondary measures included systolic and diastolic blood pressure, complete lipid profile (i.e., total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol [LDL-C], high-density lipoprotein cholesterol [HDL-C], serum triglycerides), and self-reported medication adherence (4-item Morisky Scale) and self-care activities (Summary of Diabetes Self-Care Activities questionnaire). Data were collected at baseline and at 6 months follow-up. Changes from baseline to follow-up were calculated for biomarker values, and between-group differences in the change amounts were tested using the t test for independent samples. A P value of < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: A total of 77 of 85 patients (90.6%) randomly assigned to the intervention group and 79 of 86 patients (91.9%) assigned to usual care had baseline and 6-month follow-up values. Compared with baseline values, patients in the intervention group had a mean reduction of 0.8% in A1c versus a mean increase of 0.1% from baseline in the usual care group (P = 0.019). The intervention group compared with the usual care group had small but statistically significant improvements in the secondary measures of fasting blood glucose, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, total cholesterol, LDL-C, serum triglycerides, self-reported medication adherence, and self-care activities. Between-group differences in changes in the secondary measures of HDL-C and body mass index were not significant.
Conclusions: Patients with type 2 diabetes who received pharmacist-led pharmaceutical care in an outpatient diabetes clinic experienced reduction in A1c at 6 months compared with essentially no change in the usual care group. Six of 8 secondary biomarkers were improved in the intervention group compared with usual care.
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