Fifty-one survey instruments were returned (56% response rate); however, 2 were eliminated from the study because they were from new colleges and schools that had not yet finalized their curriculum and therefore could not complete the survey instrument. The resulting usable response rate was 54% (49/91). Some survey instruments were returned but incomplete; therefore, the results discussed for each question are based on the number of actual respondents to that item and the total number of responses may vary between items. Table contains a summary of respondent demographics. The majority of respondent colleges and schools were publicly funded. The mean total student enrollment was 525 ± 361 (range 100-2000) and the mean number of full-time faculty members/positions was 46.3 ± 19.3. Colleges and schools that employed a psychiatric pharmacist were somewhat more likely to have a larger student enrollment and possess a greater number of full-time faculty members. Only one school claimed to have no potential practice site in psychiatric pharmacy available to faculty members and students.
Demographics of Colleges and Schools of Pharmacy Responding to a Survey on Instruction of Mental Health and Psychiatric Pharmacy
Table provides an overview of psychiatric pharmacy in US colleges and schools of pharmacy. Approximately three fourths of the colleges and schools employed at least 1 psychiatric pharmacist. Of these colleges and schools, 62% (23/37) employed 1 psychiatric pharmacist, while 38% (14/37) employed more than 1 psychiatric pharmacist. Examining the total for all colleges and schools, only 3.3% of reported full-time faculty positions was dedicated to this specialty area. Of the 12 colleges and schools that did not employ a psychiatric pharmacist, 4 planned to do so within the next 5 years.
Overview of Psychiatric Pharmacy in US Colleges and Schools of Pharmacy (N = 49)
Over 50% (26/49) of colleges and schools considered psychiatric pharmacy to be a content focus of their curriculum. All colleges and schools included psychiatric topics as part of a therapeutics-based course, and the mean percentage of the course dedicated to such topics was 9.5% ± 3.9% (range 2.0%-20.0%). Interestingly, the amount of the course dedicated to psychiatric topics varied little between those colleges and schools employing a psychiatric pharmacist and those not employing a psychiatric pharmacist (9.7% vs. 9.0%, respectively). Only about one fourth of colleges and schools offered elective didactic courses in psychiatric pharmacy, but the mean student enrollment (ie, percentage of each pharmacy cohort taking the course) in such cases was 26.2% ± 18.8% (range 2.0%-55.0%). Only 2 colleges and schools required a psychiatric pharmacy APPE. Over 90% of colleges and schools offered an elective psychiatric pharmacy APPE, and the mean student enrollment in such cases was 20.2% ± 19.5% (range 3.0%-60.0%).
Table details the various topics covered in clinical therapeutics-based courses. All respondent colleges and schools covered the topics of depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder. Those topics taught in fewer than two thirds of colleges and schools included social anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, eating disorders, and personality disorders. For those colleges and schools teaching the topics, the most amount of time was dedicated to depression and schizophrenia (4.0 hours and 3.6 hours, respectively), whereas the least amount of time was dedicated to social anxiety disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder (0.8 hours). Psychiatric topics were usually taught via lecture-based vs. case-based methods, with approximately three fourths of time dedicated to the former. Depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder had more time dedicated to case-based instruction compared to other psychiatric topics.
Psychiatric Pharmacy Topics Taught in Clinical Therapeutics Courses (n = 47)
Faculty instructors of psychiatric content were employed full-time in 92% of cases and part-time in 8% of cases. Only approximately one third of instructors had completed specialized postgraduate training in psychiatric pharmacy (residency ± fellowship), and about 40% had obtained board certification in psychiatric pharmacy (Table ). Fewer than half (47.4%) of the instructors possessed at least 1 of the aforementioned qualifications. Psychiatric pharmacists typically taught in both clinical therapeutics-based courses (92.1%) and psychiatric pharmacy APPEs (85.7%), whereas nonpsychiatric pharmacists were far more likely to be utilized in clinical therapeutics-based courses (98.6%) than in psychiatric pharmacy APPEs (11.4%).
Qualifications of Full-Time and Part-Time Instructors of Psychiatric Subject Matter in US Colleges and Schools of Pharmacy*