PCN 3 Featured Story: Colocation of PCN Clinical Pharmacist supporting team based care at South Hill Family Health Centre
South Hill Family Health Centre is a multidisciplinary Family Practice clinic located near Kingsway and Fraser in the Cedar Cottage neighborhood of PCN 3. Their goal is to provide comprehensive health care to a diverse population; from newborn babies to elders in the community. In the Spring of 2022, the clinic became the first in Vancouver to co-locate a Primary Care Clinical Pharmacist (PCCP). Allied health supports in the PCN have been centralized, to allow the PCN to share these limited resources more broadly and effectively. With the clinical pharmacist however, there was an opportunity to pilot co-location in a community clinic one day a week. These PCN allied health resources are known as the Interprofessional Team (IPT).
Both patients and providers are benefitting from having the PCCP in the clinic once a week. Several of the clinic’s providers have shared the impact that the PCN Pharmacist has made in their clinic:
“Having a pharmacist dedicated to our clinic has been an incredible resource for both clinicians and patients for assistance with medication coverage issue, interactions, side effects, and polypharmacy. It’s hard to imagine how we ever went without one!” – Dr. Karina Zeidler
“It has been so helpful to have a pharmacist in the clinic to run by interactions and the pros and cons around switching versus adjusting or adding different medications to optimize patient’s treatment. Having somebody in-house available to counsel patients on new medication starts, teaching around tapering schedules and helping all of us to understand coverage, benefits and pharmacare options has been invaluable.” -Dr Jim Grant
“Having such easy access to a pharmacist has been extremely helpful. Not only can we discuss questions we have regarding medications, availability, cost, etc. We can book patients in to talk with her regarding their med questions, this is a huge benefit to patients and time saving for the physician!” – Dr Maralyn Hope
“Having access to a clinical pharmacist has changed my practice, especially when it comes to patients with complex chronic disease on several medications. The care the pharmacists provide is exceptional. They are such an asset to any multidisciplinary team.” -Dr Stephanie Stacey
The Vancouver Division and Vancouver Coastal Health are grateful to South Hill Family Health Centre for pioneering the first co-located PCN Pharmacist. Several other clinics in Vancouver have now also begun co-location of a PCCP’s in their clinic. Furthermore, Vancouver Coastal Health, the Vancouver Divisions of Family Practice and the Pharmacists in PCN Program at UBC have collaborated to facilitate overhead payment to the clinics for the regular time they have the PCCP in their clinic.
We asked the current PCN 3 Pharmacist Charlotte Bohmert to share her thoughts about being a part of the team at the clinic. She says:
“I am so appreciative of being part of the wonderful team at South Hill. Being co-located at the clinic allows me to communicate easily and work closely with the providers, which is exceedingly beneficial in terms of supporting patients. I value how welcoming they have been of having a pharmacist on the team and encouraging interdisciplinary collaboration.”