Addressing Challenges of Specialty Pharmacy Expansion in Health Systems

Matthew Malachowski, PharmD, BCPS, supervisor of specialty pharmacy services at UAB Health System, discusses the challenges associated with establishing or expanding specialty pharmacy services within an institution.


Some of the challenges that are involved in establishing and expanding specialty pharmacy services within your institution, sometimes the biggest challenge is getting the services to the patients that need them the most. Being able to access the patient through provider networks, limited distribution agents, even rural communities and being able to contact the patient over the phone. Sometimes those pieces of actually connecting, communicating, and getting the resources where they’re most effective, where they provide the most value, and to the vulnerable patients that would benefit the most. Having a plan for that and having all the key stakeholders on board for implementing that can require a lot of leadership and can require a lot of understanding between those key account managers that nobody’s attempting to abuse the system. If you can get through that, and get everyone on the page of, how do we improve the health of our citizens and these vulnerable patients who need it, you can move mountains.

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