To enhance the publics access to antibiotic prophylaxis following an identified Ixodes scapularis deer tick bite through pharmacist-initiated therapy with the primary goal of reducing infection with Borrelia burgdorferi and subsequent development of Lyme disease. Providing antibiotics for Lyme disease prevention in a community pharmacy setting may improve patient access to prompt treatment within 72 hours of tick removal and increase prophylaxis treatment rates. Patients seeking evaluation and treatment after a deer tick bite can receive pharmacy-based services without an appointment and during hours when primary care offices may be closed, such as nights, weekends and holidays. Collaborative drug therapy management is a protocol by which pharmacists are initiating, modifying or continuing medication therapy regimens that has been adopted by 46 states. Currently, in the State of Rhode Island, pharmacists may enter into collaborative practice agreement protocols with physicians to provide drug therapy management services including modifying and managing drug therapy, collecting and reviewing patient histories, obtaining and checking vital signs and ordering and evaluating the results of laboratory tests directly related to drug therapy under the supervision of, or in direct consultation with a physician. This project is designed as an expansion of these services in Rhode Island to include pharmacist initiation of single-dose doxycycline therapy, under collaborative practice agreement with an infectious diseases physician, with the goal of increasing timely access to antibiotics for prevention of Lyme disease.
Anita Jackson Jacobson
University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy