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The assisted living industry is witnessing a paradigm shift. There is an ever-growing population of aging residents with increasing care needs, while staffing issues are putting significant pressure on the ability to offer optimal care. According to a November 2021 report1 by the American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living, nursing homes and assisted living communities in the United States are facing a severe labor crisis and job losses more than any other healthcare sector. This leaves ALFs understaffed and struggling to provide higher acuity care to their more vulnerable residents. While no single entity can address all these issues, LTC pharmacies can offer assistance in alleviating many of the challenges faced by ALF staff in order to ensure superior services for their elderly population.




ALFs are dealing with a monumental shift in care delivery, as the median age of their residents continues to increase and the senior population grows. Currently, over half of ALF inhabitants are over 85 years old and require assistance with basic activities such as bathing, dressing and walking. Furthermore, many are afflicted with common illnesses like high blood pressure and dementia, which necessitates more intensive care. The average ALF resident requires 12 to 14 medications daily as well as medication management assistance. As a result, ALF teams must contend with communication between staff, physicians and pharmacies to avoid adverse drug reactions or interactions. This heightened demand for care is intensified by staffing shortages caused by pandemic-induced job loss among ALFs – a November 2021 report from AHCA and NCAL indicated that 38 000 jobs were lost within 18 months, with high turnover rates and an inability to meet extra shifts leading to almost all surveyed communities reporting staffing deficiency.




As ALF residents require more thorough care from a strained and thinly stretched staff, an LTC pharmacy is an integral partner in helping communities provide top-notch, safe care with numerous advantages for both staff and residents. An LTC pharmacy that is local provides ALFs and their residents with a range of benefits, including:

A medication management team is essential for guaranteeing the safety and well-being of every ALF’s residents. This dedicated group of experts pays close attention to all concerns and makes it a priority to become familiar with both your staff and the individual medications of each resident. Their work should be in cooperation with those providing care, including any doctors, nurses, or community members involved with the resident. By taking an integrated approach, extra measures are taken to secure the safety and security of residents.

A LTC pharmacy should review residents’ entire medication regimen regularly and whenever a new medication is prescribed to make sure drug combinations are always safe, medications are necessary, and any potentially harmful reactions are minimized. COVID-19 reviews can be conducted either onsite or virtually, depending on your community’s policies.

Variations in packaging from multiple pharmacies or with numerous medication types can cause tablets to be given incorrectly. A long-term care pharmacy can put a stop to these problems and ensure the safety of patients with consistent, smart packaging that divides drugs by time of day and date. It makes it simple for staff to guarantee the right medications are taken when they’re supposed to be. Moreover, “NO TOUCH” packaging that has a barcode able to be scanned helps guard against human error and enables tracking of medicine intake and administration.

The latest technology can be incredibly advantageous to protecting residents’ safety and accuracy of e-prescribing. If you already have an eMAR system, check that the LTC pharmacy you work with interfaces with it. Further, ensure your Long-term Care pharmacy is utilizing advanced technology, analytics and insights to increase profitability, safety and efficiency for your community. This involves accessing data available on the community and compiling it into interpretable analytic reports, which graphically show resident information, medicines used etc.




An LTC pharmacy provides more than medication management. It also provides a direct line of support, service, and assistance. As ALFs are strained by outside factors, they need the expertise and accessibility that only an LTC pharmacy can provide, including:

LTC pharmacies work to guarantee that medications prescribed for residents are covered by insurance/Medicare/Medicaid. When pre-authorization or non-covered medication issues arise, experienced pharmacists take action, offering help with customer support 800 numbers, and other billing issues. Your pharmacy partner can effectively connect seniors to their physicians and insurance companies, ensuring prescriptions are filled according to coverage guidelines. Moreover, they provide the Medicare Part D guidance needed to maximize coverage and minimize expenses.

Look for a pharmacy that offers onsite training and works with you to evaluate the needs of your staff. Well-educated staff are more effective and make fewer mistakes. Medication passes, fall prevention, Alzheimer’s, antipsychotic use, and med pass are just some of the topics nurses and pharmacist consultants should in-service your staff. As a result of this training, staff confidence will increase, resulting in higher staff retention and better resident outcomes.

Pharmacy services for long-term care facilities serve as an important lifeline that can resolve issues at any time and schedule medication deliveries around your schedule. Pharmacy staff and pharmacists are available 24/7 to provide answers and deliver medications to you if you have questions or an emergency.




As our seniors age and require more hands-on care, finding and retaining qualified staff can be a challenge. This is where Long-Term Care (LTC) pharmacies prove to be invaluable partners in providing quality care to residents of assisted living facilities (ALFs). Not only do they help ease the workload on your team, LTC pharmacies also offer support, convenience and safety. Ultimately, choosing the right partner will make a huge impact on the overall experience for both residents and staff.