Pharmacy-Adjacent Medical Offices Can Expand Health CoverageBy Miriam Bello | Mon, 01/04/2021 - 09:34
Q: What has been the most significant benefit for patients from pharmacy-adjacent medical offices (PAMOs)?
A: We have 4,500 PAMOs across the country, which deliver more than 130,000 consultations per day. The biggest benefit is the convenience the population derives from them. PAMOs provide quality and affordable healthcare access through well-trained, qualified doctors. ANADIM’s PAMOs cover significant patient needs, especially now, given the workload that hospitals are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We work closely with the General Health Council and one of our main objectives is to continuously improve the quality of PAMOs. We are doing this through certification of quality processes. We are also interested in working alongside the Ministry of Health to collaborate on the provision of healthcare. PAMOs are an important contributor to the sector due to their capacity and how they support the industry’s workload. We would like to work alongside the government as a medicine distribution center and to have our facilities provide greater coverage and expand capacity. This would give patients a sense of safety while hospitals continue treating COVID-19 patients.
PAMOs are also an option as vaccinating points due to the large number of facilities available. We are approaching the government in this regard to create a positive health environment that generates added value for the industry.
Q: Why was it important for ANADIM to establish an ethics code for PAMOs?
A: The ethics code is a way to homologate how PAMO doctors behave with different entities, including patients, the pharmacy employer and pharmaceutical laboratories. This code serves as a guideline that allows service to be transparent and clear. It was drafted alongside ANTAD and the General Health Council to demonstrate our joint objective to improve service quality.
Among our primary goals, ANADIM is seeking CONAMEGE’s certification of PAMOs as a quality service for the population.
Q: What are the main benefits doctors receive from working in PAMOs?
A: Among the main benefits is that they have a space for business and a guaranteed salary. PAMO doctors are employees of the pharmacy, meaning that regardless of the workload, they receive a salary. We work to ensure our doctors are not skewing pharmacy needs but remain committed to the patient and treating their illness. PAMO doctors do not receive any additional benefit from prescribing certain brands. They are transparent with their patients.
Q: How can PAMOs help expand health coverage in Mexico?
A: PAMOs are oriented to primary care; however, we understand the need for Mexico to expand medical care for chronic diseases. In this sense, we are looking forward to fomenting preventive healthcare to avoid developing ailments that represent a burden on the public health system. Most of our PAMOs are located in urban areas, so there is potential to cover rural zones too.
Q: What are your experiences as a female leader in the healthcare industry?
A: I think this sector is very open to equal gender participation. I have never felt gender inequality regarding opportunity and development and my voice in the sector has always been heard. I have been able to work with many women who are also in leadership positions, so I see this sector as a place where women have the opportunity to grow.
The National Association of Medicine Distributors (ANADIM) brings together wholesalers and distributors of pharmaceutical products in Mexico. ANADIM focuses on the development of retail trade, stimulating and promoting business opportunities for each of its affiliated companies.