AJMC 2015

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) believes that pharmacogenomic testing can improve medication-related outcomes across the continuum of care in all health-system practice settings. These improvements include reduction in suboptimal clinical outcomes, decreased cost of treatment, better medication adherence, more appropriate selection of therapeutic agents, decreased length of treatment, and enhanced patient safety.1-3 Because of their distinct knowledge, skills, and abilities, pharmacists are uniquely positioned to lead inter-professional efforts to develop processes for ordering pharmacogenomic tests and for reporting and interpreting test results. They are also uniquely qualified to lead efforts to guide optimal drug selection and drug dosing based on those results. Pharmacists therefore have a fundamental responsibility to ensure that pharmacogenomic testing is performed when needed and that the results are used to optimize medication therapy.1 Pursuant to this leadership role, pharmacists share accountability with other hospital and health-system leaders, such as physicians, laboratory professionals, and genetic counselors, for the ongoing implementation and application of pharmacogenomics across the continuum of care. Because test results will have implications throughout a patient’s lifetime, all pharmacists should have a basic understanding of pharmacogenomics in order to provide appropriate patient-care recommendations. Some advanced pharmacist functions in applying clinical pharmacogenomics may require specialized education, training, or experience. ASHP encourages pharmacist education on the use of pharmacogenomics and advocates inclusion of pharmacogenomics and its application to the therapeutic decision-making process in college of pharmacy curricula and Board of Pharmacy Specialties certification programs.