Medication Management

Medications are often used with other forms of treatment like counseling, family therapy, and/or behavioral therapies. With careful monitoring and continuous discussion, you can find the right medication and treatment plan for you.
Medication Management Therapy
Every person has a unique brain chemistry that works differently with every drug, no two people will have the same response.

What is Medication Management Therapy?

Medication management therapy – or MTM – is a treatment system used by doctors, mental health professionals, and pharmacists to ensure that patients receive optimal therapeutic outcomes for the prescription medications they may be taking. Medication Management Therapy covers a broad range of professional activities, such as:

  • Performing patient assessments or a comprehensive review of prescriptions and their possible interaction or side effects.
  • Formulating both short and long-term medication treatment plans.
  • Monitoring the safety and efficacy of all prescription medication plans.
  • Ensuring directional or instruction-based compliance through patient education.
  • Better documentation and communication between MTM service providers to maintain a high standard of care between medical professionals.

In short, medication management therapy is a cumulative effort between pharmacies, mental health professionals, and other medical professionals to ensure that drugs are being used as prescribed. At the same time, they are limiting chances for abuse and providing to ensure that patients are educated and able to use the prescription properly for their specific ailment. Since 2004, eleven national pharmacy organizations have adopted this as the standard for MTM care.

Methods Used in Medication Management Therapy

Medication therapy management includes five core components that the American Pharmacists Association and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Foundation laid out in a comprehensive service model that more than half a dozen different pharmacy-related associations have since adopted.

These components are:

Medication therapy review (MTR): This is a systematic process of patient-specific data collection that helps professionals to assess medication therapies that could help to identify medication-specific problems and formulate a plan to resolve them. This step often takes the form of a spoken or written (usually a checklist) consultation that helps the pharmacist and mental health providers to determine if the medication provided gives the patient the best chance at recovery or management of specific conditions with the slightest risk of adverse side effects. If there is a better alternative, the MTR will help the professionals to find it.

Personal medication record (PMR): This is essentially a list of all other prescription medications that you are currently on or have been taking in the recent past. This record includes herbal products, non-prescription medicines, and dietary supplements.The PMR allows mental health professionals and pharmacists to assist the patient with their overall medication therapy self-management and ensure minimal chances for inter-drug reactions or serious adverse side effects due to certain cocktails of prescription medication.

Medication-related action plan (MAP): The document details a list of actions to take (or not accept) to better track progress for achieving specific health goals while on the medications. For example, if you are affected with crippling anxiety, the MAP will provide you with steps to take (and not take) and information you need to properly assess whether or not the medication is helping to combat the condition or to better deal with it.

Intervention or referral: Some patients’ conditions or therapies may be highly complex, and as such, mental health professionals can often intervene if the patient lacks a general understanding of the condition or its treatment protocol. This often leads to direct interaction with the pharmacist and the prescribing physician to determine if additional monitoring, patient education, or a return visit to the doctor is needed.

Documentation and follow-up: This documentation is intended to be a complete record of patient care steps as well as a documented history of medications, past interactions, or unintended side effects, and as such, this document needs to be updated periodically. This update typically happens when the patient’s care is transferred from one care setting to another, a prescription change is made, or when requested by the patient.

What to Look for When Finding a MTM Specialist.

Most mental health professional associations now adhere to MTM or a modified strategy when dealing with medication or prescription management. As such, your local pharmacy often has just what you need. However, just like any other patient care service, if you aren’t particularly pleased with how your pharmacist or MTM specialist handles your needs,  you are free to search for others who may be more accommodating.

What is Psychiatric Medication Management?

If you are unsure if medications are the best option for you, a psychiatrist or practitioner can significantly assist you in exploring your options. Psychiatric medication management is when psychiatrists or practitioners give patients psychiatric medication management and assessment. There are a lot of unknowns when it comes to the available medications; however, understanding how a professional can help you and learning what medication management means will help ease all of the unknowns. Also, knowing what to expect with a psychiatric assessment will reduce your anxiety about it. 

Our mental health is connected with our overall physical health and sense of well-being. Adverse experiences like trauma can leave us feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and depressed. These feelings can lead to destructive behaviors in our lives and relationships if we don’t seek treatment. Like it is important to have a yearly physical by your doctor, it’s just as important to have a mental health checkup.  

A psychiatrist or psychiatric practitioner will give you an initial checkup similar to what a primary care provider might do. This checkup is called an assessment, an overview of your symptoms that will help determine whether or not the medication is a good option for treating your mental health concerns. Primary care doctors address your physical care, psychiatrists use the form of discussion to get to the core of your mental health concerns.

As a result of the assessment, a diagnosis is made, and a treatment plan is designed for your needs. If medication is decided to be the best option, you will be informed and educated about the medication’s uses and side effects. This is the medication management aspect of psychiatric care. They monitor how helpful the medication is over some time to determine if the treatment meets your goals. First, you have to agree on medication and treatment options, and then the medication will be prescribed for a trial period to observe its effectiveness. It is important to note that due to how psychiatric medications react differently to everyone, the effectiveness of the medications varies from person to person. Every person has a unique brain chemistry that works differently with every drug; no two people will have the same response. 

Medications are often used with other forms of treatment like counseling, family therapy, and/or behavioral therapies. You can find the proper medication and treatment plan with careful monitoring and continuous discussion. It is important to remember that the use of prescription medications always introduces potential risks and side effects. These should all be discussed in detail with you by your psychiatrist. Many psychological problems do not need medicines. However, there are instances where prescription medicines are a good option for struggling patients. 

Medicine is essential to treating many mental illnesses like depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety, panic, sleep problems, attention deficit disorder, etc.

Just know that with any treatment, there are no magic bullets. Working on your mental health takes work and time. No medication can do the work for you. Getting better means taking an active stance toward your problems and challenges Overall, medications are one tool that can help you to feel better. However, physical exercise, eating well, avoiding non-prescription drugs, maintaining good relationships, and learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety are all ways to improve.


Jonathan Williams (2017). What is Psychiatric Medication Management? Retrieved on June, 18 2019 from:

MA, L. (2014). Psychiatric Medication Management, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, June 18 from:

Patricia Deegan (2016). Reclaiming your power during medication appointments with your psychiatrist. Retrieved on 2019, June 18 from: