The Pharmacists’ Patient Care Process

Recognizing the need for a consistent process in the delivery of patient care across the profession, the Joint Commission of Pharmacy Practitioners (JCPP) released the Pharmacists’ Patient Care Process. The process is applicable to any practice setting where pharmacists provide patient care and for any patient care service provided by pharmacists.


Patient Care Process document (.pdf)

Cite as: Joint Commission of Pharmacy Practitioners. Pharmacists’ Patient Care Process. May 29, 2014. Available at:

Using principles of evidence-based practice, pharmacists:


The pharmacist assures the collection of necessary subjective and objective information about the patient in order to understand the relevant medical/medication history and clinical status of the patient. Information may be gathered and verified from multiple sources, including existing patient records, the patient, and other health care professionals. This process includes collecting:

  • A current medication list and medication use history for prescription and nonprescription medications, herbal products, and other dietary supplements.
  • Relevant health data that may include medical history, health and wellness information, biometric test results, and physical assessment findings.
  • Patient lifestyle habits, preferences and beliefs, health and functional goals, and socioeconomic factors that affect access to medications and other aspects of care.


The pharmacist assesses the information collected and analyzes the clinical effects of the patient’s therapy in the context of the patient’s overall health goals in order to identify and prioritize problems and achieve optimal care. This process includes assessing:

  • Each medication for appropriateness, effectiveness, safety, and patient adherence.
  • Health and functional status, risk factors, health data, cultural factors, health literacy, and access to medications or other aspects of care.
  • Immunization status and the need for preventive care and other health care services, where appropriate.


The pharmacist develops an individualized patient-centered care plan in collaboration with other health care professionals and the patient or caregiver that is evidence-based and cost effective. This process includes establishing a care plan that:

  • Addresses medication-related problems and optimizes medication therapy.
  • Sets goals of therapy for achieving clinical outcomes in the context of the patient’s overall health care goals and access to care.
  • Engages the patient through education, empowerment, and self-management.
  • Supports care continuity, including follow-up and transitions of care as appropriate.


The pharmacist implements the care plan in collaboration with other health care professionals and the patient or caregiver. During the process of implementing the care plan, the pharmacist:

  • Addresses medication- and health-related problems and engages in preventive care strategies, including vaccine administration.
  • Initiates, modifies, discontinues, or administers medication therapy as authorized.
  • Provides education and self-management training to the patient or caregiver.
  • Contributes to coordination of care, including the referral or transition of the patient to another health care professional.
  • Schedules follow-up care as needed to achieve goals of therapy.

Follow-up: Monitor and Evaluate

The pharmacist monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of the care plan and modifies the plan in collaboration with other health care professionals and the patient or caregiver as needed. This process includes the continuous monitoring and evaluation of:

  • Medication appropriateness, effectiveness, and safety and patient adherence through available health data, biometric test results, and patient feedback.
  • Clinical endpoints that contribute to the patient’s overall health.
  • Outcomes of care including progress toward or the achievement of goals of therapy.

Other Patient Care Process Resources

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