Not ready to retire? How RxLive makes it easier for providers to keep practicing medicine

As we’ve detailed before, physician shortage in the United States is a problem. By 2030, the country is expected to have as many as 40,000 fewer primary care physicians than we need. At the same time, the number of Americans aged 65 and older – that is, those most in need of the most care – is on track to increase by 55 percent.

But the issue is about more than an aging patient population. The fact is, the median age of physicians is now 55 years old. And that means many providers will reach retirement age just as they’re needed most.

With all the burnout over the past several years, here’s what many may find a surprising fact: among other reasons, a genuine love for the medicine  and the pressing need for primary care providers has many retirement-age physicians weighing whether to stay in practice. 

Here, we’ll detail how RxLive makes it easier for providers who want to keep practicing medicine to remain at work.

The issue: how to make it easier for physicians who remain in the workforce?

The burgeoning “silver tsunami” promises to test the resolve of healthcare providers across the United States. And for physicians in private practice and network administrators alike, the question of how to make it easier for providers in the workforce has never been more pressing.

One quarter of physicians nearing retirement say burnout, rather than age, is why they’re preparing to leave the profession. Counterintuitively, that’s good news: with the right incentives, more than fifty percent of physicians say that (eg, part-time work, flexible schedules, or reduced clinical workloads) they’d keep practicing medicine.

The fact is, a technology-powered pharmacy program provides flexibility for all members of a physician-led care team – from pharmacists to nurses to the physicians themselves. And it supports the improved population health outcomes that make it easier to care for patients throughout your network.

Below, we’ll detail how RxLive’s comprehensive value-based pharmacy system can help drive these innovations.

Pharmacist-led interventions help reduce physician workloads

RxLive’s vision for value-based, pharmacist-led interventions is clear: enable pharmacists to operate at the top of their license, and clinicians throughout your network will be able to do the same. And by relieving physician workloads, pharmacists empower providers to focus more on their patients while working more flexible – possibly even part-time – schedules.

The reason we can help make this happen is twofold:

  • As trained medication experts, pharmacists are uniquely positioned to identify medication-related issues and advise courses of treatment that help avoid them. This reduces complications – like drug-drug interactions – to enhances population-level health and the support the financial performance associated with positive outcomes.
  • Through prescriptive authority, pharmacists can take work off of PCP’s plates by initiating and monitoring medication-based courses of treatment. But even in states where that isn’t possible, handling work such as medication reconciliation, then acting as a prescription- focused coordinator with the rest of the care team, is a huge help.

A little flexibility goes a long way. Remember: more than half of retirement-age physicians want to remain at work. Making it easier for them to do so and the boost to population-level health across the continuum of care will have long term benefits.

Vertically integrated workflows power impactful patient insights

Being able to see the right information at the right time helps providers make impactability-driven choices that can reduce workloads and help patients be healthier. And as we’ve long known, better individual outcomes are key to better population-level health.

RxLive’s vertically integrated workflows mine data to support the insights that make it easier to deliver improved care across the board. 

Here’s how. Using, your pharmacy team can mine data from Surescripts (which tracks length of treatment, medications, and even environmental factors) along with your existing EHR data. Then, after running analytics on that data, RxLive can and offer key insights to guide treatment.

Of course, the impactability of those insights depends on how easy they are to access. RxLive’s fractional network of pharmacists integrates with your existing care team to help deliver the patient information they need, when they need it, including…

  • Stats on medication adherence.
  • Potential drug interactions.
  • Comorbidities.

Then, our telehealth platform empowers pharmacists to deliver these insights via easy-to-access, location neutral care. 

For patients of physicians who are choosing to scale down their practice, this is doubly beneficial. On the one hand, pharmacist-led telehealth interventions can help fill any potential gap resulting from physicians working fewer hours or offering fewer in-person appointments. 

And on the other, integrating remote technology into their practice helps providers have more flexibility in when, where, and how they work.

A value-based pharmacy system empowers better work-life balance

We know how important it is to have control over your work-life balance. In fact, as we’ve detailed before, it’s part of why we built RxLive

Interested in learning how a value-based pharmacy system can make physicians’ lives easier

Please be in touch.

Kristen Engelen, PharmD
Kristen Engelen, PharmD, is the chief pharmacy officer of RxLive and a certified consultant pharmacist; she has over a decade of experience in retail pharmacy settings. Kristen became an RxLive co-founder because of her passion for geriatric pharmacy, with a focus on the intersection of pharmacy and aging.