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Summaries of Independent Scientist (K) Awards

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Alexander, G. Caleb

Institution: University of Chicago
Grant Title: An RCT to Decrease Out-of-Pocket Prescription Costs
Grant Number: K08 HS15699
Duration: 5 years (2006-2011)
Total Award: $620,730

Project Description: This randomized trial will develop, implement, and evaluate the effectiveness of an intervention designed to assist patients and physicians in safely reducing patients' out-of-pocket prescription costs. The project has five aims:

  1. Assess the impact of a patient empowerment and physician education intervention of patients' out-of-pocket costs.
  2. Assess the impact of a patient empowerment and physician educational intervention on patients' medication appropriateness, quality of life, and cost burden.
  3. Examine effect of a patient empowerment and physician education intervention on the frequency of discussions about out-of-pocket prescription costs Examine how changes in patients' out-of-pocket costs are achieved.
  4. Explore barriers preventing enhanced effectiveness of the interventions.

Career Goals: Dr. Alexander is an Assistant Professor in General Internal Medicine in the Department of Medicine at the University of Chicago. He received his MD from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and did his residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. This was followed by a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars appointment at the University of Chicago. Dr. Alexander would like to become a nationally respected health services researcher who examines policy-relevant questions at the intersection of bioethics, public policy, and clinical medicine.

Progress to Date: The trial is underway. Thus far, 14 physicians and 73 patients have been enrolled. The data collection forms have been improved.

Future Plans: Dr. Alexander will continue to enroll patients and physicians with the ultimate goal of 180 patients.

Highlights and Specific Accomplishments:

  • Faculty Member, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholars Program.
  • Faculty Member, MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics.
  • John A. Oremus Memorial Scholar, University of Chicago.

K-Generated Publications:

Alexander GC, Zhang J, Basu A. Characteristics of patients receiving pharmaceutical samples and association between sample receipt and out-of-pocket prescription costs. Medical Care 2008; 46:394-402.

Yin W, Basu A, Zhang J, Rabbani A, Meltzer D, Alexander GC. The effect of Medicare Part D prescription benefit on drug utilization and expenditures. Annals of Internal Medicine 2008; 148:169-77.

Rabbani A, Alexander GC. Out-of-pocket and total costs of fixed dose combination antihypertensives and their components. American Journal of Hypertension 2008; 21(5):509-13.

Epstein AJ, Rathore SR, Alexander GC, Ketcham J. Physicians' views on access to prescription drugs under Medicare Part D. American Journal of Managed Care. 2008. 14:SP5-13.

Qato DM, Alexander GC, et al. Use of prescription and over-the-counter medicines and dietary supplements among older adults in the United States: Findings from a population-based study. JAMA. 2008. 300:2867-78.

Alexander GC, Stafford RS. Does comparative effectiveness have a comparative edge? JAMA. 2009. 301:2488-90.

Chen DT. Wynia MK, Moloney RM, Alexander GC. Physician knowledge of the FDA-approved indications of commonly prescribed drugs: Results from a national survey. Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety. 2009. 18:1-7.

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