Faces of 340B
Jessica Tilton, Clinical Coordinator, University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System, IL
The University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System (UI Health) encompasses a 465-bed tertiary hospital, 21 clinics, and 11 federally qualified health clinics that serve a high percentage of uninsured, underinsured, or Medicaid patients in Chicago. One of the many ways the health system uses 340B savings is to operate a robust Medication Therapy Management Clinic (MTMC). The clinic is an uncompensated service whose patients include people with multiple chronic illnesses who are at high risk for medical complications. The clinic’s six pharmacists and one pharmacy technician work to address the core challenges patients are facing with their medications and managing their diseases. Jessica Tilton, the clinical coordinator at the MTMC, shares an example of a patient who has benefited from the clinic. The patient was on numerous medications to treat his cardiovascular disease, blood pressure, and other chronic diseases. Although the patient’s vitals were optimal, he often felt dizzy completing ordinary daily activities. In collaboration with the patient’s doctor, the clinic reduced the number of medications the patient was taking, and his quality of life vastly improved. UI Health also has conducted rigorous research studying how patient health outcomes have been affected through participation in the MTMC. The results include a drop in cardiovascular events by a factor of 10, a reduction of at least $500,000 in direct medical costs, and an increase in patients’ life expectancy.