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Keywords:

  • clinical pharmacist;
  • care management;
  • disease management;
  • hyperlipidemia;
  • dyslipidemia;
  • veterans;
  • outcomes

Objective

To evaluate the effectiveness of a care management program provided by clinical pharmacists for veterans with dyslipidemia.

Design

Retrospective cohort design.

Setting

Two primary care clinics at a Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Patients

An intervention (IT) cohort of 213 patients referred for management of dyslipidemia by clinical pharmacists and a control cohort of 219 patients with dyslipidemia receiving usual care (UC).

Methods

Data were obtained from electronic medical records regarding drug therapy, lipid levels, and patient characteristics. Using multivariable regression models to adjust for baseline characteristics, the primary analyses compared mean final measured values of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, total cholesterol (TC), high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and triglycerides (TGs) among the IT and UC cohorts at the final follow-up visits. Secondary analyses compared the proportion of patients achieving National Cholesterol Education Program/Third Report of the Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (NCEP/ATPIII) concordant LDL goals and the time to achieve LDL goals between the two groups.

Results

Compared with the UC cohort, the adjusted difference in the mean final measured LDL for the IT cohort was −10.4 mg/dl (95% confidence interval [CI] −16.1 to −4.6, p < 0.001) and TC was −12.7 (95% CI −21.3 to −4.1, p=0.004). There were no significant differences in the adjusted mean final measured HDL or TGs between the two groups. The NCEP/ATPIII goal LDL was met in 80.3% of patients in the IT cohort and 65.3% of patients in the UC cohort (odds ratio [OR], 2.6; 95% CI 1.6–4.3, p<0.001). Time to achieve goal LDL was significantly shorter for the IT cohort compared with the UC cohort (risk ratio, 1.8; 95% CI 1.2–2.8, log-rank p=0.002).

Conclusion

Veterans referred to a clinical pharmacist for treatment of dyslipidemia achieved significant reductions in TC and LDL. A greater proportion of patients achieved NCEP/ATPIII goal LDL, and the time to attainment of LDL goals was shorter in the pharmacist-managed cohort, supporting a continued role for pharmacy care management in the treatment of patients with dyslipidemia.