TriCore Reference Laboratories

Paving the way to integrate two of healthcare's crucial services

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| Source: TriCore Reference Laboratories

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., Aug. 2, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- TriCore Reference Laboratories (TriCore) is joining forces with the University of New Mexico's (UNM) College of Pharmacy, creating a unique opportunity for pharmacists & laboratorians to partner in the laboratory environment to improve patient outcomes. Laboratorians and pharmacists create a powerful team to affect the Triple Aim of: improved patient experience, reduced healthcare costs, and improved population health.

TriCore has long been a teaching partner with UNM School of Medicine students, residents and fellows as they work in an actual medical laboratory. TriCore is now providing training for pharmacy students, residents and fellows after Pharmacy school. Pharmacists will benefit from knowledge about the lab industry and gain insight on how the lab and pharmacy intersect.

"Coordinated care is a team sport. We can't accomplish this mission without each profession learning from one another on the overall cost of healthcare delivery," said Khosrow Shotorbani, CEO of TriCore. "We envision that this partnership will result in value based decisions focused on improving population health while reducing overall costs."

Over the next year ten students from the College of Pharmacy will participate in the newly created Population Health Management rotation. These students will support TriCore's clinical solutions enterprise, focusing on the pharmacy-laboratory interaction. The students will be in a non-traditional pharmacy setting learning how lab results play a vital role in healthcare and how combining pharmacy and laboratory information supports improved screening, diagnosis, and treatment for many diseases. One example of this is the appropriate use of antibiotics to reduce microbial resistance and the spread of infections by resistant organisms.

Dr. Monique Dodd was a lab technologist at TriCore when she decided to attend UNM's College of Pharmacy. In 2014, she received her PharmD degree and returned to TriCore to complete a one-year residency program and a one-year fellowship. Dr. Dodd has focused on infections and the need to prescribe the right drug – critical for antimicrobial stewardship. "This collaboration between the lab and the College of Pharmacy is a new and exciting opportunity for pharmacy students and pharmacists. Having an understanding of laboratory technology and the predictive and diagnostic value of the results enhances the ability to determine optimal care for patients. Ultimately, a pharmacist in this setting has better information to engage with physicians, health systems and Managed Care Organizations on making better clinical decisions for optimizing healthcare."

UNM College of Pharmacy dean and professor, Lynda Welage, PharmD said, "We are delighted with our growing partnership with TriCore. It is an incredible laboratory to prepare pharmacy students, clinical pharmacy fellows and other healthcare trainees for future opportunities in healthcare. We thank TriCore for supporting our educational mission and look forward to enhancing our collaboration with them in the future".

Larry L. Georgopoulos, PharmD PhC, UNM College of Pharmacy said, "The College of Pharmacy values its teaching partnership with TriCore and the unique teaching venue where our pharmacy students, residents and fellows learn how partnering with laboratorians will improve patient experience, reduce healthcare costs and improve the population health of New Mexicans."

Dr. Nick Dayan, TriCore's Chief HR Officer, said, "We are committed to enhancing the educational resources in our community and keeping the strength and talents of New Mexico's best pharmacists and laboratorians within our state."
 
About TriCore Reference Laboratories

TriCore Reference Laboratories is an independent clinical reference laboratory providing a complete range of services to health care professionals across the Southwest as well as pathology consultation services to clinicians across the country. TriCore also provides investigational services including FDA-regulated clinical trials, IRB-approved studies, device and diagnostic instrument testing, serving global biotech firms as well as academic clients. Visit www.tricore.org for more information.

Carol Biondi

505-379-5616