PURPOSE In California, the passage of SB493 in July of 2013 was a milestone in advancing pharmacy practice. Among other things, the new legislation allows pharmacists to provide routine immunizations without a protocol and furnish medications for international travelers for conditions not requiring a diagnosis. When developing a pharmacist-run travel health service, consideration must be given to multiple important factors, including pharmacist training, physician partnership, logistics, from scheduling to documentation, and the resources necessary to provide a travel health service.5 This article sets out to provide guidance and insight to pharmacists seeking to implement a travel health service.
SUMMARY Travel health requires providers with knowledge regarding epidemiology, transmission, and prevention of travel-associated infectious diseases, a complete understanding of vaccine indications and procedures, and prevention and management of noninfectious travel-associated health risks. Pharmacists seeking to implement travel health services need to seek out appropriate resources for pharmacist training, workflow and logistical considerations, and travel health-specific resources to optimally provide this service.
CONCLUSION The traveling population is at significant risk for travel-related diseases, but only a small number actually get the advice, vaccines and medications they need. With the passage of SB493 in California, the 40,000 registered pharmacists and 6,000 pharmacies across California could provide the essential access, convenience and expertise that a growing traveling population needs to stay healthy while abroad. Whether in a community pharmacy or ambulatory care clinic, pharmacists must ensure they can provide or arrange for personalized, comprehensive travel health services.
Gregorian T, Bach A, Hess K, et al. Implemeting pharmacy-based travel health services: Insight and guidance from frontline practicioners. Calif Pharm. 2017;64(1):23-29.
California Pharmacists Association
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