Psychiatric pharmacists have been utilizing their specialized knowledge and skills to improve the minds and lives of individuals suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders since the first psychiatric pharmacy residencies were established in the mid 1970's. The first group of board certified psychiatric pharmacists were recognized by (BPS) in 1996 and there are now 758 board certified psychiatric pharmacists. One of the main goals in establishing board certification in psychiatric pharmacy was to show that an individual has demonstrated the knowledge and skills to care for our patients/clients. These facts are well known by CPNP members and most non- psychiatric pharmacists. Unfortunately, the federal government has yet to recognize pharmacists (board-certified or otherwise) as official reimbursable providers. Fortunately, psychiatric pharmacists are known for action rather than reaction. We may be small as organizations go, but we are mighty and vocal!

CPNP works diligently to ensure the collective voice of our members is heard. Dr. Jerry McKee recently represented CPNP as a guest to the Joint Commission on Pharmacy Practice (JCPP) working with other pharmacy members toward a strategic plan for pharmacy practice. Drs. McKee, Kelly Lee and Carla Cobb authored a commentary in the Primary Care Companion entitled: Psychiatric Pharmacist Integration Into the Medical Home. This commentary aligns with CPNP's April 3, 2012 white paper recommending an often overlooked solution to care coordination and medication management problems—the utilization of appropriately trained pharmacists to support patient-focused care.

CPNP has endorsed comprehensive medication management or “CMM” as the gold standard patient care practice for qualified clinical pharmacists. Our strategy is to offer a high level of comprehensive patient care which results in patient outcomes that can be measured. The belief is that this strategy would provide a recognized service showing measurable value to members of Congress. We continue to partner with ACCP on a comprehensive initiative to seek coverage under the Medicare program (Part B) for the direct patient care services of qualified clinical pharmacists. Concurrent to our ACCP partnership, ACCP and CPNP continue our active engagement with the Pharmacy Stakeholder's Provider Status workgroup in an attempt to reach a policy consensus that could lead to a coalition legislative ask.

Optimal verbiage for the legislative ask is challenging given that a community pharmacist's patient care activities may be vastly different than an ambulatory care or acute care pharmacist's patient care activities.

CMM is different than MTM in that it requires face-to-face interaction with a patient and calls on the pharmacist to evaluate all of the patient's medications to determine if they are appropriate, effective, safe and convenient. This type of service will be essential as the Affordable Care Act changes health care delivery. Drs. Carla Cobb, Jerry McKee and CPNP's legislative consultant, Carey Potter, have worked diligently with CPNP's Board of Directors to advocate for widespread implementation and recognition of CMM. In order to get members up to speed on CMM, CPNP is launching a 4-part series of webinars starting in October. Information is available in another article within CPNP News. These webinars will address: What is CMM? How can one start a CMM practice? What about documentation and payment? I encourage all CPNP members to take part in these webinars and learn how CMM can improve patient outcomes and professional satisfaction. The CPNP Foundation has started a CMM network of members dedicated to sharing their practices and helping others deal with challenges in establishing a successful CMM practice. Contact the CPNP office to learn more about and join this network.

September is the month when nominations are sought for leadership positions on the CPNP Board of Directors. Please participate in the future of CPNP by nominating a candidate for secretary, president-elect and member at-large. These individuals will be guiding the growth, direction and ultimate success of CPNP. CPNP's committee draft will soon follow so please consider volunteering for a committee, task force or other volunteer opportunity. Exciting times for psychiatric pharmacist providers!