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Pharmaceutical services in the United States Air Force.

Authors
  • Young, J H
Type
Published Article
Journal
American journal of health-system pharmacy : AJHP : official journal of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists
Publication Date
Apr 01, 1997
Volume
54
Issue
7
Pages
783–786
Identifiers
PMID: 9099345
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The status of pharmaceutical services in the United States Air Force medical service is described. Air Force pharmacy is adopting new programs, staffing standards, inventory methods, and roles for pharmacists and technicians. One of the most visible changes is TRICARE, an interservice program that provides improved access to care. Many Air Force medical treatment facilities have been closed; prescription mail-out programs and networks of community pharmacies are filling the gap. The Air Force pharmacy team consists of more than 1300 pharmacists and technicians. Air Force pharmacists are military officers first. Great emphasis is placed on medical readiness training and continuing education. Some Air Force pharmacies are very small outpatient operations filling fewer than 300 prescriptions per day; others fill well over 4000. Many hospitals are being considered for more outpatient-focused operations. Because of anticipated minor reductions in pharmacist staffing, Air Force pharmacists will have to maximize efficiencies to maintain or improve current levels of service. More and better patient information will be provided and distributive processes streamlined. A greater role for technicians is anticipated. The future includes pharmacists serving in a wide variety of leadership and staff positions, improving the use of computers, and incorporating new technologies. Air Force pharmacy is changing to ensure uninterrupted fulfillment of its responsibilities.

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