The pressures driving the need for an expanded practice scope in community pharmacy have been building for the past 2 decades. Many pharmacists have chosen to embrace the pharmaceutical care model in their practice sites to meet patient and healthcare system needs. The potential for medication therapy management (MTM) services provide an additional career opportunity for pharmacy graduates. Colleges of pharmacy offer advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs) in the community setting that are designed to prepare students for these opportunities. These sites provide students with the opportunity to observe the integration of pharmaceutical care activities into community practice. Although developing an APPE site is challenging, serving as a preceptor benefits the students, the site, and the patients served. Therefore, colleges of pharmacy and community pharmacists are collaborating to increase the number of APPE sites to prepare pharmacy students for practice today and tomorrow.
curriculum; advanced pharmacy practice experience; community pharmacy; preceptor
The rapid growth and evolution of the pharmacy profession has created a wide array of opportunities for graduating pharmacists beyond traditional community pharmacy or hospital practice. Management and leadership positions in federal and state healthcare agencies, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, retail pharmacies, academia and managed care organizations increasingly require the pharmaceutical knowledge obtained through a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree combined with financial, organizational, and management skills. In these innovative positions, pharmacists are being called upon to assume responsibilities as executives and administrators in systems providing pharmacist care services to patients.
To endow students with knowledge and skills required to perform the duties required in these decision-making positions, the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy has established 3 joint degree programs: the PharmD/Master of Business Administration (PharmD/MBA), PharmD/Master of Public Administration (PharmD/MPA), and PharmD/Master of Science in Economics (PharmD/MS). This paper describes these joint degree programs.
dual degree; joint degree; education; doctor of pharmacy degree; master of business administration; master of public administration
The purpose of this study was to validate previously published satisfaction scales in larger and more diversified patient populations; to expand the number of community pharmacies represented; to test the robustness of satisfaction measures across a broader demographic spectrum and a variety of health conditions; to confirm the three-factor scale structure; to test the relationships between satisfaction and consultation practices involving pharmacists and pharmacy students; and to examine service gaps and establish plausible norms.
Patients completed a 15-question survey about their expectations regarding pharmaceutical care-related activities while shopping in any pharmacy and a parallel 15 questions about their experiences while shopping in this particular pharmacy. The survey also collected information regarding pharmaceutical care consultation received by the patients and brief demographic data.
A total of 628 patients from 55 pharmacies completed the survey. The pilot study’s three-factor satisfaction structure was confirmed. Overall, satisfaction measures did not differ by demographics or medical condition, but there were strong and significant store-to-store differences and consultation practice advantages when pharmacists or pharmacists-plus-students participated, but not for consultations with students alone.
Patient satisfaction can be reliably measured by surveys structured around pharmaceutical care activities. The introduction of pharmaceutical care in pharmacies improves patient satisfaction. Service gap details indicated that pharmacy managers need to pay closer attention to various consultative activities involving patients and doctors.
patient expectations; patient experiences; advanced pharmacy practice experience; medication management
The purpose of this article is to describe the experiential program created at the newly formed University of Hawai‘i at Hilo College of Pharmacy (UHH CoP). The Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) rotations were developed to prepare student pharmacists for their final year of Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) rotations by improving clinical skills and patient interactions. In partnership with the John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) Department of Family Practice, physician and pharmacist teams collaborate to deliver patient care for chronic diseases and elevate educational opportunities provided by UHH CoP. Another goal of the experiential program is to determine whether the investment of pharmacist faculty and adjunct physician/nurse preceptors prepares students for the final year of APPE rotations. A survey was administered to non-faculty pharmacist preceptors who taught the third IPPE rotation during the summer of 2009. Twenty-nine surveys were received from six facilities on O‘ahu and the Big Island. Initial survey results revealed an overall rating average of 3.72 (Likert scale: 1-lowest to 5-highest), an average of 4.14 for professionalism, an average of 3.41 for overall clinical skills, and an average of 3.45 for overall readiness for experiential rotations. Average ratings when compared with fourth-year students from several mainland colleges ranged from 1.7 to 2.2 (1-worse than, 2-same, 3-better). This data demonstrates that UHH CoP is investing faculty and preceptor resources wisely to enhance the preparation of students for APPE rotations.
With the emerging role of pharmacists in implementing smoking cessation services and the recent evidence about smoking cessation pharmacotherapies, a needs analysis to assess baseline knowledge about current smoking cessation practice is needed; hence, training and development in this area can target possible ‘gaps’.
This study aimed at exploring pharmacy students’ knowledge about and attitudes toward smoking cessation, as compared to practicing community pharmacists and smoking cessation educators. The overall objective was to uncover underlying ‘gaps’ in pharmacy-based smoking cessation practice, particularly clinical gaps.
Final-year pharmacy students at the University of Sydney, practicing community pharmacists and smoking cessation educators in Australia.
As no previous standard pharmacist-focused smoking cessation knowledge questionnaires exist, a review of the literature informed the development of such a questionnaire. The questionnaire was administered to a cohort of fourth-year pharmacy students at the University of Sydney, practicing pharmacists and smoking cessation educators. Data analysis was performed using Predictive Analytics SoftWare (PASW® Statistics 18). Mean total scores, independent t-tests, analysis of variances and exploratory factor analysis were performed.
Main outcome measure
To determine areas of major clinical deficits about current evidence related to smoking cessation interventions at the pharmacy level.
Responses from 250 students, 51 pharmacists and 20 educators were obtained. Smoking educators scored significantly higher than pharmacists and students (P < .05), while score differences in the latter two groups were not statistically significant (P > .05). All groups scored high on ‘general’ knowledge questions as compared to specialised pharmacologic and pharmacotherapeutic questions. All respondents demonstrated positive attitudes toward the implications of smoking cessation. Factor analysis of the 24-item knowledge section extracted 12 items loading on 5 factors accounting for 53% of the total variance.
The results provide a valid indication of ‘gaps’ in the practice of up-to-date smoking cessation services among Australian pharmacy professionals, particularly in clinical expertise areas involving assessment of nicotine dependence and indications, dosages, adverse effects, contraindications, drug interactions and combinations of available pharmacotherapies. These gaps should be addressed, and the results should inform the design, implementation and evaluation of a pharmacy-based educational training program targeting current clinical issues in smoking cessation.
Attitudes; Knowledge; Pharmacy; Questionnaire; Smoking cessation
Interventions made by pharmacists to resolve issues when filling a prescription ensure the quality, safety, and efficacy of medication therapy for patients. The purpose of this study was to provide a current estimate of the number and types of interventions performed by community pharmacists during processing of prescriptions. This baseline data will provide insight into the factors influencing current practice and areas where pharmacists can redefine and expand their role.
Patients and methods
A cross-sectional study of community pharmacist interventions was completed. Participants included third-year pharmacy students and their pharmacist preceptor as a data collection team. The team identified all interventions on prescriptions during the hours worked together over a 7-day consecutive period. Full ethics approval was obtained.
Nine student–pharmacist pairs submitted data from nine pharmacies in rural (n = 3) and urban (n = 6) centers. A total of 125 interventions were documented for 106 patients, with a mean intervention rate of 2.8%. The patients were 48% male, were mostly ≥18 years of age (94%), and 86% had either public or private insurance. Over three-quarters of the interventions (77%) were on new prescriptions. The top four types of problems requiring intervention were related to prescription insurance coverage (18%), drug product not available (16%), dosage too low (16%), and missing prescription information (15%). The prescriber was contacted for 69% of the interventions. Seventy-two percent of prescriptions were changed and by the end of the data collection period, 89% of the problems were resolved.
Community pharmacists are impacting the care of patients by identifying and resolving problems with prescriptions. Many of the issues identified in this study were related to correcting administrative or technical issues, potentially limiting the time pharmacists can spend on patient-focused activities.
pharmaceutical care; pharmacy; medications; Canada; prescriptions; drug-related problems
Objective. To describe the implementation of an advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE) in medication therapy management (MTM) designed to contribute to student pharmacists’ confidence and abilities in providing MTM.
Design. Sixty-four student pharmacists provided MTM services during an APPE in a communication and care center.
Assessment. Students conducted 1,495 comprehensive medication reviews (CMRs) identifying 6,056 medication-related problems. Ninety-eight percent of the students who completed a survey instrument (52 of 53) following the APPE expressed that they had the necessary knowledge and skills to provide MTM services. Most respondents felt that pharmacist participation in providing Medicare MTM could move the profession of pharmacy forward and that pharmacists will have some role in deciding the specific provisions of the Medicare MTM program (92% and 91%, respectively).
Conclusion. Students completing the MTM APPE received patient-centered experiences that supplemented their confidence, knowledge, and skill in providing MTM services in the future.
medication therapy management; advanced pharmacy practice experience; student pharmacists; patient-centered care
To implement and assess a 4-week advanced pharmacy practice experience in transitional care.
Students participated in the transitional care planning of patients being discharged from 4 general medicine services. Students interviewed patients; assessed discharge medications; reconciled preadmission and discharge medications; provided medication counseling; and conducted postdischarge follow-up by phone to assist patients with medication-related problems and identify additional concerns.
Student involvement increased the number of patients who could be assessed and interviewed by the pharmacist preceptor from 10 patients/day to 15 to 20 patients/day. Students strengthened their provider-patient and provider-provider communication skills and developed skills in identifying and resolving barriers to medication adherence.
This transitional care APPE provided students an opportunity to gain experience and self-confidence in the application of pharmaceutical care skills in a transitional care setting, while also providing valuable patient care services to the hospital.
advanced pharmacy practice experience; transitional care; pharmacy student; medication reconciliation
During the past few years, the pharmacy profession has expanded significantly in terms of professional services delivery and now has been recognized as an important profession in the multidisciplinary provision of health care. In contrast to the situation in developed countries, pharmacists in developing countries are still underutilized and their role as health care professionals is not deemed important by either the community or other health care providers. The aim of this paper is to highlight the role of pharmacists in developing countries, particularly in Pakistan. The paper draws on the literature related to the socioeconomic and health status of Pakistan's population, along with background on the pharmacy profession in the country in the context of the current directions of health care.
The paper highlights the current scenario and portrays the pharmacy profession in Pakistan. It concludes that although the pharmacy profession in Pakistan is continuously evolving, the health care system of Pakistan has yet to recognize the pharmacist's role. This lack of recognition is due to the limited interaction of pharmacists with the public. Pharmacists in Pakistan are concerned about their present professional role in the health care system. The main problem they are facing is the shortage of pharmacists in pharmacies. Moreover, their services are focused towards management more than towards customers. For these reasons, the pharmacist's role as a health care professional is not familiar to the public.
University-based continuing education (CE) fulfills an important role to support the professional development of pharmacists, advance the practice of pharmacy, and contribute to societal needs for research and healthcare services. Opportunities for pharmacists to engage in new models of patient care are numerous worldwide, particularly as pharmacists’ scope of practice has expanded. Approaches to CE have changed to address the changing needs of pharmacists and now include a variety of approaches to support development of knowledge and skills. There is emphasis on the learning process as well as the knowledge, with the introduction of the concept of continuing professional development (CPD).
As institutions of research and education, universities are uniquely positioned to bridge the gap between academic and practice environments, providing opportunities for translation of knowledge to practice. The Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Alberta is a provider of CE in Alberta, Canada, where an expanded scope of pharmacy practice includes prescribing, administering injections, accessing electronic patient records, and ordering laboratory tests. In this paper, the Faculty offers views about future directions for CE, including the integration of CE with core faculty activities, expanding the audience for CE, areas of focus for learning, and partnerships. Finally, we hope to ignite dialogue with others in the profession about the role and function of university-based CE.
continuing education; professional development; continuing professional development; universities
This trial aims to investigate the effectiveness and cost implications of 'pharmaceutical care' provided by community pharmacists to elderly patients in the community. As the UK government has proposed that by 2004 pharmaceutical care services should extend nationwide, this provides an opportunity to evaluate the effect of pharmaceutical care for the elderly.
The trial design is a randomised multiple interrupted time series. We aim to recruit 700 patients from about 20 general practices, each associated with about three community pharmacies, from each of the five Primary Care Trusts in North and East Yorkshire. We shall randomise the five resulting groups of practices, pharmacies and patients to begin pharmaceutical care in five successive phases. All five will act as controls until they receive the intervention in a random sequence. Until they receive training community pharmacists will provide their usual dispensing services and so act as controls.
The community pharmacists and general practitioners will receive training in pharmaceutical care for the elderly. Once trained, community pharmacists will meet recruited patients, either in their pharmacies (in a consultation room or dispensary to preserve confidentiality) or at home. They will identify drug-related issues/problems, and design a pharmaceutical care plan in conjunction with both the GP and the patient. They will implement, monitor, and update this plan monthly. The primary outcome measure is the 'Medication Appropriateness Index'. Secondary measures include adverse events, quality of life, and patient knowledge and compliance. We shall also investigate the cost of pharmaceutical care to the NHS, to patients and to society as a whole.
Pharmaceutical care signifies a shift of practice in pharmacy from being drug product-oriented to the one that is patient-oriented to achieve definite outcomes that improves patients’ quality of life. In order to achieve pharmaceutical care, pharmacists have to assume the role of caregiver, communicator, decision-maker, teacher, researcher, life-long learner, leader, and manager, which will help him to provide individualized care. As the patients visit community pharmacists more often, they can play a major role in providing individual care to the patients especially in the management of chronic noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). Community pharmacists have to upgrade their expertise in drug product orientation to that of clinical orientation to provide patient oriented care. Hence pharmacists have a larger role to play in managing NCDs which are rapidly increasing in India.
Burden of disease; noncommunicable diseases; pharmaceutical care
The newly emerging practice of Pharmaceutical Care requires that pharmacists take responsibility for the outcomes of drug therapy. Improvement in Quality of Life (QoL) represents the final outcome of the care process and indicates the success of interventions.
To assess the impact of a Pharmaceutical Care specialist asthma service provided by community pharmacists to a sample of patients with asthma, the outcome indicators being changes in health status and QoL.
Sixty-two adult asthma patients (17 years and older) living in two rural regions of New Zealand, were segregated into two groups for phased introduction to the service. The patients acted as their own controls before they received the pharmacists’ service. They had been diagnosed with asthma at least six months previously, and their asthma was symptomatic and not considered optimally controlled prior to the study.
There was significant improvement in asthma-related QoL (as measured by the Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire) following introduction of the service, and pharmacists were able to identify, prevent or resolve over 400 drug-related problems.
The results suggest that with appropriate training and support, New Zealand pharmacists can help asthma patients achieve greater quality of life. This research has implications for the introduction of Pharmaceutical Care services in other countries and for patients with other conditions who require ongoing management.
Pharmaceutical Care; Quality of Life; asthma; pharmacists
Pharmacy education in India traditionally has been industry and product oriented. In contrast to the situation in developed nations, graduate pharmacists prefer placements in the pharmaceutical industry. To practice as a pharmacist in India, one needs at least a diploma in pharmacy, which is awarded after only 2 years and 3 months of pharmacy studies. These diploma-trained pharmacists are the mainstay of pharmacy practice. The pharmacy practice curriculum has not received much attention. In India, there has been a surge in the number of institutions offering pharmacy degrees at various levels and a practice-based doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program was started in some private institutions in 2008. However, relatively little information has been published describing the current status of complex pharmacy education of India. In this paper we describe pharmacy education in India and highlight major issues in pharmacy practice including deficiencies in curriculum. The changing face of the profession is discussed, including the establishment of the PharmD program. The information presented in this paper may stimulate discussion and critical analysis and planning, and will be of value in further adaptation of the pharmacy education to desired educational outcomes.
pharmacy education; pharmacy practice; India
Pharmacists' roles are evolving from that of compounders and dispensers of medicines to that of experts on medicines within multidisciplinary health care teams. In the developing country context, the pharmacy is often the most accessible or even the sole point of access to health care advice and services.
Because of their knowledge of medicines and clinical therapeutics, pharmacists are suitably placed for task shifting in health care and could be further trained to undertake functions such as clinical management and laboratory diagnostics. Indeed, pharmacists have been shown to be willing, competent, and cost-effective providers of what the professional literature calls "pharmaceutical care interventions"; however, internationally, there is an underuse of pharmacists for patient care and public health efforts. A coordinated and multifaceted effort to advance workforce planning, training and education is needed in order to prepare an adequate number of well-trained pharmacists for such roles.
Acknowledging that health care needs can vary across geography and culture, an international group of key stakeholders in pharmacy education and global health has reached unanimous agreement that pharmacy education must be quality-driven and directed towards societal health care needs, the services required to meet those needs, the competences necessary to provide these services and the education needed to ensure those competences. Using that framework, this commentary describes the Pharmacy Education Taskforce of the World Health Organization, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and the International Pharmaceutical Federation Global Pharmacy and the Education Action Plan 2008–2010, including the foundation, domains, objectives and outcome measures, and includes several examples of current activities within this scope.
Children warrant access to care from clinical pharmacists trained in pediatrics. The American College of Clinical Pharmacy Pediatrics Practice and Research Network (ACCP Pediatrics PRN) released an opinion paper in 2005 with recommendations for improving the quality and quantity of pediatric pharmacy education in colleges of pharmacy, residency programs, and fellowships. While progress has been made in increasing the availability of pediatric residencies, there is still much to be done to meet the direct care needs of pediatric patients. The purpose of this Joint Opinion paper is to outline strategies and recommendations for expanding the quality and capacity of pediatric clinical pharmacy practitioners by 1) elevating the minimum expectations for pharmacists entering practice to provide pediatric care; 2) standardizing pediatric pharmacy education; 3) expanding the current number of pediatric clinical pharmacists; and 4) creating an infrastructure for development of pediatric clinical pharmacists and clinical scientists. These recommendations may be used to provide both a conceptual framework and action items for schools of pharmacy, health care systems, and policymakers to work together to increase the quality and quantity of pediatric training, practice, or research initiatives.
fellowship; pediatric pharmacy; pharmacy education; standardization; residency
In France, to practice as a pharmacist, one needs a “diplome d'état de Docteur en Pharmacie” This degree is awarded after 6 or 9 years of pharmacy studies, depending on the option chosen by the student. The degree is offered only at universities and is recognized in France as well as throughout the European Union.
Each university in France is divided into faculties called Unité de Formation et de Recherche (UFR). There are 24 faculties of pharmacy or UFRs de pharmacie. A national committee develops a pharmacy education program at the national level and each faculty adapts this program according to its specific features and means (eg, faculty, buildings). The number of students accepted in the second year is determined each year by a Government decree (numerus clausus).
Successive placements, totalling 62 weeks, progressively familiarize the student with professional practice, and enable him/her to acquire the required competencies, such as drug monitoring and educating and counselling patients. Challenges facing community pharmacies in the next 10 years are patient education, home health care, and orthopaedics; in hospital pharmacies, empowering pharmacists to supervise and validate all prescriptions; and finally, research in pharmacy practice.
international pharmacy education; France
Pharmacists, with expertise in optimizing drug therapy outcomes, are valuable components of the healthcare team and are becoming increasingly involved in public health efforts. Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians in diverse community pharmacy settings can implement a variety of asthma interventions when they are brief, supported by appropriate tools, and integrated into the workflow. The Asthma Friendly Pharmacy (AFP) model addresses the challenges of providing patient-focused care in a community pharmacy setting by offering education to pharmacists and pharmacy technicians on asthma-related pharmaceutical care services, such as identifying or resolving medication-related problems; educating patients about asthma and medication-related concepts; improving communication and strengthening relationships between pharmacists, patients, and other healthcare providers; and establishing higher expectations for the pharmacist’s role in patient care and public health efforts. This article describes the feasibility of the model in an urban community pharmacy setting and documents the interventions and communication activities promoted through the AFP model.
Asthma; Community pharmacy; Pharmacists; Pharmaceutical care; Collaboration; Communication
Objective. To evaluate the impact of a continuing pharmacy education (CPE) course on Spanish community pharmacists’ participation in a pharmacotherapy follow-up program.
Design. Participation in a CPE course offered 4 times over a 4-year period via satellite teleconferencing was monitored and the data analyzed to determine the course’s impact on community pharmacists’ participation in a pharmacotherapy follow-up program.
Assessment. Community pharmacists’ participation in the pharmaceutical care CPE course had a slightly positive impact on their participation in the pharmacotherapy follow-up program. In the best profiles, there was a probability of 7.3% that participants would participate in the pharmacotherapy follow-up program.
Conclusions. Completion of pharmaceutical care CPE courses did not have a significant impact on pharmacists’ participation in a pharmacotherapy follow-up program.
continuing pharmacy education; distance education; pharmaceutical care; pharmacotherapy follow-up
Collaborative working relationships (CWRs) between community pharmacists and physicians may foster the provision of medication therapy management services, disease state management, and other patient care activities; however, pharmacists have expressed difficulty in developing such relationships. Additional work is needed to understand the specific pharmacist-physician exchanges that effectively contribute to the development of CWR. Data from successful pairs of community pharmacists and physicians may provide further insights into these exchange variables and expand research on models of professional collaboration.
To describe the professional exchanges that occurred between community pharmacists and physicians engaged in successful CWRs, using a published conceptual model and tool for quantifying the extent of collaboration.
A national pool of experts in community pharmacy practice identified community pharmacists engaged in CWRs with physicians. Five pairs of community pharmacists and physician colleagues participated in individual semistructured interviews, and 4 of these pairs completed the Pharmacist-Physician Collaborative Index (PPCI). Main outcome measures include quantitative (ie, scores on the PPCI) and qualitative information about professional exchanges within 3 domains found previously to influence relationship development: relationship initiation, trustworthiness, and role specification.
On the PPCI, participants scored similarly on trustworthiness; however, physicians scored higher on relationship initiation and role specification. The qualitative interviews revealed that when initiating relationships, it was important for many pharmacists to establish open communication through face-to-face visits with physicians. Furthermore, physicians were able to recognize in these pharmacists a commitment for improved patient care. Trustworthiness was established by pharmacists making consistent contributions to care that improved patient outcomes over time. Open discussions regarding professional roles and an acknowledgment of professional norms (ie, physicians as decision makers) were essential.
The findings support and extend the literature on pharmacist-physician CWRs by examining the exchange domains of relationship initiation, trustworthiness, and role specification qualitatively and quantitatively among pairs of practitioners. Relationships appeared to develop in a manner consistent with a published model for CWRs, including the pharmacist as relationship initiator, the importance of communication during early stages of the relationship, and an emphasis on high-quality pharmacist contributions.
Pharmacists; Physicians; Collaborative working relationships; Pharmacist-physician collaborative index; Community
The aging of the US population will have a major effect on the future practice of pharmacy. By 2030, 20% of Americans will be aged 65 years and older, an increase from 12.4% in 2000.1 A challenge to colleges and schools of pharmacy in the 21st century is to prepare students and practitioners to meet the growing pharmaceutical care needs of the older adult population and to meet these needs in a variety of care settings. This paper reviews the present state of geriatric pharmacy education and training, including strategies for ensuring that practicing pharmacists will have adequate knowledge, skills, attitudes, and values to provide this care. Secondly, this report provides strategic directions and recommendations for successfully implementing geriatrics curricula at an institutional level
Determine the effectiveness of TIMER (Tool to Improve Medications in the Elderly via Review) in helping pharmacists and pharmacy students identify drug-related problems during patient medication reviews.
In a randomized, controlled study design, geriatric patient cases were sent to 136 pharmacists and 108 third-year pharmacy students who were asked to identify drug related-problems (DRPs) with and without using TIMER.
Pharmacists identified more tool-related DRPs using TIMER (p = 0.027). Pharmacy students identified more tool-related DRPs using TIMER in the first case (p = 0.02), but not in the second.
TIMER increased the number of DRPs identified by practicing pharmacists and pharmacy students during medication reviews of hypothetical patient cases.
medication therapy management; drug-related problems; elderly; community pharmacy
Despite the high number of injecting drug users (IDUs) in Estonia, little is known about involving pharmacies into human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention activities and potential barriers. Similarly, in other Eastern European countries, there is a need for additional sources for clean syringes besides syringe exchange programmes (SEPs), but data on current practices relating to pharmacists’ role in harm reduction strategies is scant. Involving pharmacies is especially important for several reasons: they have extended hours of operation and convenient locations compared to SEPs, may provide access for IDUs who have avoided SEPs, and are a trusted health resource in the community. We conducted a series of focus groups with pharmacists and IDUs in Tallinn, Estonia, to explore their attitudes toward the role of pharmacists in HIV prevention activities for IDUs. Many, but not all, pharmacists reported a readiness to sell syringes to IDUs to help prevent HIV transmission. However, negative attitudes toward IDUs in general and syringe sales to them specifically were identified as important factors restricting such sales. The idea of free distribution of clean syringes or other injecting equipment and disposal of used syringes in pharmacies elicited strong resistance. IDUs stated that pharmacies were convenient for acquiring syringes due to their extended opening hours and local distribution. IDUs were positive toward pharmacies, although they were aware of stigma from pharmacists and other customers. They also emphasized the need for distilled water and other injection paraphernalia. In conclusion, there are no formal or legislative obstacles for providing HIV prevention services for IDUs at pharmacies. Addressing negative attitudes through educational courses and involving pharmacists willing to be public health educators in high drug use areas would improve access for HIV prevention services for IDUs.
Injecting drug users; Pharmacists; Harm reduction services
The pharmaceutical care approach serves as a model for medication review, involving collaboration between GPs, pharmacists, patients, and carers. Its use is advocated with older patients who are typically prescribed several drugs. However, it has yet to be thoroughly evaluated.
To estimate the effectiveness of pharmaceutical care for older people, shared between GPs and community pharmacists in the UK, relative to usual care.
Design of study
Multiple interrupted time-series design in five primary care trusts which implemented pharmaceutical care at 2-month intervals in random order. Patients acted as their own controls, and were followed over 3 years including their 12 months' participation in pharmaceutical care.
In 2002, 760 patients, aged ≥75 years, were recruited from 24 general practices in East and North Yorkshire. Sixty-two community pharmacies also took part. A total of 551 participants completed the study.
Pharmaceutical care was undertaken by community pharmacists who interviewed patients, developed and implemented pharmaceutical care plans together with patients' GPs, and thereafter undertook monthly medication reviews. Pharmacists and GPs attended training before the intervention. Outcome measures were the UK Medication Appropriateness Index, the Short Form–36 Health Survey (SF-36), and serious adverse events.
The intervention did not lead to any statistically significant change in the appropriateness of prescribing or health outcomes. Although the mental component of the SF-36 decreased as study participants become older, this trend was not affected by pharmaceutical care.
The RESPECT model of pharmaceutical care (Randomised Evaluation of Shared Prescribing for Elderly people in the Community over Time) shared between community pharmacists and GPs did not significantly change the appropriateness of prescribing or quality of life in older patients.
health services for the aged; medication therapy management; pharmaceutical care; polypharmacy; randomised controlled trial
Objectives. To evaluate the impact of student pharmacists delivering medication therapy management (MTM) services during an elective advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE).
Methods. Student pharmacists provided MTM services at community pharmacy APPE sites, documented their recommendations, and then made follow-up telephone calls to patients to determine the impact of the MTM provided. Students were surveyed about the MTM experience.
Results. Forty-seven students provided MTM services to 509 patients over 2 years and identified 704 drug-related problems (average of 1.4 problems per patient). About 53% of patients relayed the recommendations to their physician and 205 (75%) physicians accepted the recommendations. Eighty-eight percent of patients reported feeling better about their medications after receiving MTM services. A majority of the students perceived their provision of MTM services as valuable to their patients.
Conclusions. Providing MTM services to patients in a pharmacy practice setting allowed student pharmacists to apply skills learned in the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) curriculum.
medication therapy management; experiential education; doctor of pharmacy program; advanced pharmacy practice experience; community pharmacy