Pharmacist initiation of postexposure doxycycline for Lyme disease prophylaxis

In an article published by Jackson, et al. it is reported that a community pharmacy has begun to successfully develop a program to dispense doxycyline to patients who have come into contact with the tick species known to carry Lyme disease. The pharmacy, which is located in Rhode Island, is independently run and wanted to increase the ability of patients to access this treatment for Lyme disease. Patients were asked to report any symptoms of the disease and to assess the performance of the pharmacy. Overall, the project was deemed a great success and was expanded to more pharmacies. It is also being used as a benchmark for treatment of Lyme disease in areas with high infection rates.

I feel that this article is important to pharmacy for a few reasons. First, an independent pharmacy was able to identify a problem in their community and develop a plan to solve it. Second, they successfully executed their plan and have plans for expansion. Third, they have shown the importance of not only independent pharmacists, but the importance of pharmacists in general. This is a great example of collaborative practice. I’m sure that PA, a state that has a fair amount of Lyme disease diagnoses, could benefit from similar programs. What do you think about this program?

Link to the article

Jackson, Anita N., K. Kelly Orr, Jeffrey P. Bratberg, and Frederic Silverblatt. “Pharmacist Initiation of Postexposure Doxycycline for Lyme Disease Prophylaxis.” Journal of the American Pharmacists Association 54.1 (2014): 69-73. Web.