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Pharmacy information vs. insight: what's the difference?

There have been several critical events in world history that ushered in new “ages.”  The Industrial Revolution brought about the Industrial Age and greatly impacted how people across the planet lived their lives.

Decades later, we entered the Information Age. The advent of the internet made information available to us at our fingertips. Before that we would spending hours upon hours in the library in search of various pieces of information. Now, with a verbal request to any number of internet-connected devices we can find any amount of information. For example, you can very likely find the high and low temperature as well as the times for sunrise and sunset in the city you were born on your actual birthday with a simple query.

The availability of all of this information has also led to the challenge of how we process all of this information.

I would suggest to you that we are now through the Information Age. We are in a world now that is drowning in information but starving for wisdom. The wisdom comes from how we process all the information available to us in some way that we can make a positive use of.

Let’s say that you know someone who wants to lose some weight. There are dozens of different diet and exercise programs out there. While they are the same in intent (to lose weight) they can be radically different in how they're administered. Some diets are low carb, others are low fat. And people have had success with many of these different methodologies. And people have failed following the same methodology that a friend had success with.

We are not a society that lacks information. We are society that lacks insight. 

I have heard some claim that we are now in the Age of Insight. The age where we take the information available to us and then find ways to apply it in such a way as to deliver a benefit. In keeping with the theme of the last several articles, we would call this delivering “value.”

How many drugs are available to treat diabetes? Dozens across several classes of drugs. We have the information that provides the potential to improve the diabetes care of millions of patients living with diabetes. What we need is to deliver the value of the insights to help patients get the medications they need and use them in such a way as to derive a benefit.

This is where we flex our leadership muscles. And some of us struggle greatly because we lack strong leadership muscles.

When we think about improving the quality of the care we provide, a big part of it has to be around delivering the value and insight to help patients achieve their therapeutic goals. 

When you think of the patients you serve, some are reaching their goals, and others are not. At least not yet. We all face this situation. We all have patients who are experiencing success and we all have some who are not. To improve the quality of the care we provide, we must learn new ways to lead these patients to therapeutic success.  This will require us to provide valuable insights to our patients that will empower them to be successful.

Until next time -

Jesse McCullough, PharmD

Connect with Jesse on LinkedIn



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