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Lives Changed: How This Pharmacist Changed a Patient’s Life by Considering the Bigger Picture

Lives Changed: How This Pharmacist Changed a Patient’s Life by Considering the Bigger Picture

Pharmacists change lives every day—and we think that’s something to celebrate! That’s why, in this ongoing series, we’ll spotlight pharmacists who have gone above and beyond to change the lives of their patients.

To kick things off, we’re excited to introduce you to Dr. Shannon Reidt. Dr. Reidt works as an Assistant Professor in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Minnesota. A few years ago, she shared one of her favorite patient stories—the story of Barb—for AACP’s Health Starts Here campaign.

The Problem

Barb was an older patient who was referred to Dr. Reidt by her group of primary care physicians. This is mainly because she wasn’t showing up for her scheduled clinic appointments.

Barb had a history of hypertension, diabetes, and COPD. And, even when Barb was able to show up to her scheduled appointments at the clinic, her blood sugars and blood pressure were consistently very high.

Essentially, Barb had health issues that she needed to get under control, but without showing up to her appointments, this likely wouldn’t occur.

This caused concern in Dr. Reidt. She knew she’d need to do some digging to figure out how to solve the problem.

The Solution

Dr. Reidt and the team at the clinic decided that they needed to visit Barb in her home to get a better perspective of the bigger picture. So, she hopped in the car and headed to see Barb.

When she arrived, she discovered two very important things:

  1. She found that Barb wasn’t showing up to her clinic appointments because she had lost her apartment and was staying with various relatives.
  2. She discovered that Barb didn’t have much money for food. And, because many medications need to be taken on a full stomach, Barb wasn’t taking her medications regularly.

With this information, Dr. Reidt was able to move forward with a plan to help Barb despite the challenges of her current living situation.

First, she connected Barb to the clinic’s social worker. Then, Dr. Reidt worked with Barb’s primary care physicians to streamline her medications. These efforts ensured that Barb was safe, and that her medications and health plan would be easier for her to manage in her current situation.

Pharmacists Changing Lives

By taking the time to learn more about Barb’s situation, Dr. Reidt was able to obtain a clearer understanding of what Barb was going through. This allowed her to work with a team of health professionals to develop a streamlined health plan designed to keep Barb healthy despite her current circumstances.

Today, Barb is doing great! She’s living in stable housing and is even engaged to be married. Her success and health can be partially attributed to the hard work and true compassion of Dr. Reidt. Like many pharmacists, she went above and beyond to see the bigger picture, and the patient is better for it!

Please Note: Names have been altered to protect patient privacy.

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