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July 18, 2014

CVS, Palmetto Health agree to partnership to improve communication, patient health

Medical providers at Palmetto Health and CVS will begin collaborating in an effort designed to make patient care in the Midlands more efficient and effective.

Medical providers at Palmetto Health and CVS will begin collaborating in an effort designed to make patient care in the Midlands more efficient and effective.

CVS Caremark on Friday announced the new partnership, one of four new deals with major health care providers in the U.S. Structurally, the deal involves upgrades in information sharing, but that also should lead to better results for patients.

The affiliation allows seamless integration of electronic medical records for Palmetto Health patients who go to CVS MinuteClinics for health care as well as those who go to CVS to get prescriptions filled. The communication can help primary care physicians or specialists at Palmetto Health know if patients are filling their prescriptions, or if a patient has gone to a MinuteClinic several times for a chronic condition. In some cases, the MinuteClinic nurse practitioners can work together with Palmetto Health physicians on a care program for patients.

“Finding cost-effective ways to increase access to care continues to be important, especially in this era of health care reform, and we are pleased to work together with these health care providers to help coordinate comprehensive care for their patients,” said Dr. Troyen Brennan, chief medical officer for CVS Caremark.

MinuteClinic already sends patient visit summaries to any primary care providers if patients have one. But those summaries are sent by fax or mail. The electronic medical records sharing agreement allows quicker and more complete collaboration with primary care physicians at Palmetto Health.

CVS Caremark now has these sorts of agreements with 40 major health care providers across the country.

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