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XLHealth and University of Maryland School of Pharmacy Team Up to Train Pharmacists Serving Chronically Ill Medicare Beneficiaries

Tuesday, March 30, 2010 Press Release J E 4
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BALTIMORE, March 29 XLHealth, a Baltimore-based company focused on improving the health care of chronically ill seniors, announced today that it will team up with the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy to conduct training for XLHealth clinical pharmacists who provide medication management services to beneficiaries enrolled in Care Improvement Plus, the company's Medicare health plan.

Under the agreement, clinical pharmacists would participate in approximately 12 sessions during the next year, each covering a topic related to the drug therapy needs of seniors with chronic illness. Through its Pharmacotherapy Management Center, Care Improvement Plus provides medication therapy management services to more than 66,000 Medicare members in six states. Members with chronic illnesses or other complex health care needs have the option to participate in the plan's "PharmAssist" program which includes consultation with a clinical pharmacist to conduct a comprehensive assessment of their medication needs.

"The majority of our members have extensive medication regimens that are often difficult to manage," said Andrea Hershey, Pharm.D., Vice President of Pharmacy at XLHealth. "Teaming up with the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy will be beneficial to our staff, but ultimately, our members will reap the greatest rewards through the specialized care and counseling they will be receiving."

"We are thrilled to be able to provide training for Care Improvement Plus' team and applaud XLHealth's innovative approach to providing members with specialty pharmacy support," said David Roffman, Pharm.D., a professor in the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy's Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science and the department's program coordinator. "With a growing number of seniors on upwards of eight or more medications, proper training and education is as important as ever to effective pharmacological practice."

Care Improvement Plus' PharmAssist program is staffed by experienced clinical pharmacists who perform high level pharmacotherapy reviews. Reviews include assessing members' complete medication profiles to detect potential safety concerns; such as drug interaction issues and medication duplications, as well as provide consultation on potential gaps in therapy, medication education, adherence monitoring, and assistance with nonprescription medications.

"As a top 10 school of pharmacy, the University of Maryland is committed to creating partnerships that combine the expertise of its faculty with innovative patient care initiatives that ultimately improve health care outcomes," says Magaly Rodriguez de Bittner, PharmD, BCPS, CDE, professor and chair of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science at the School of Pharmacy. "This collaboration will capitalize on the unique talents of pharmacists -- improving the health of XLHealth's Medicare members."

About XLHealth Corporation

XLHealth Corporation (http://www.xlhealth.com ) is the owner and operator of Care Improvement Plus (http://www.careimprovementplus.com), a Medicare Advantage health plan committed to delivering quality health care benefits and serving the underserved. Focused on improving patient outcomes and reducing health care spending, Care Improvement Plus provides comprehensive Medicare coverage and a Part D prescription drug benefit, plus additional services such as dental and vision coverage, and care management support.

About the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy

Founded in 1841, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy is the fourth oldest school of pharmacy in the nation. The School is a thriving center for professional and graduate education, pharmaceutical care, research, and community service. Ranking ninth in the nation, the School strives to improve the health and well-being of society by aiding in the discovery, development and use of medicines. The School's PharmD program expanded to The Universities at Shady Grove in Montgomery County in the fall of 2007, and construction is underway for a $62 million, seven-story building adjacent to the School's Pharmacy Hall.

Media Contact: Katy Funk 410-821-8220 katyf@imre.com

SOURCE XLHealth Corporation
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