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1.  Using a Conflict Conceptual Framework to Describe Challenges to Coordinated Patient Care from the Physicians’ and Pharmacists’ Perspective 
In an effort to increase cost-effectiveness of health care and reduce overall costs, patient-centered medical homes have been proposed to spur fundamental changes in the way primary care is delivered. One of the chief principles that describe a patient-centered medical home is that care is organized across all elements of the broader health care system, including community pharmacies.
To identify and describe challenges to a physician-pharmacist approach to coordinating patient care.
A descriptive, exploratory, non-experimental study was conducted in Wisconsin (U.S. State) from June–December, 2011. Data were collected through two rounds of face-to-face interviews with physicians and community pharmacists. The first round involved one-on-one interviews with pharmacists and physicians. The second round brought pharmacist-physician dyads together in an open-ended interview exploring issues raised in the first round. Content analysis was guided by a conflict management conceptual framework using NVivo 10 qualitative software.
A total of four major themes emerged from the conflict analysis of interviews that illustrate challenges to coordinated patient care: Scarce resources, technology design and usability, insurance constraints, and laws and policy governing patient care. The study findings indicate that both groups of healthcare professionals work within an environment of conflict and have to negotiate the challenges and strains that exist in the current healthcare system. Their need to work together, or interdependence, is primarily challenged by scarce resources and external interference.
Bringing physicians and pharmacists together for a face-to-face interaction successfully stimulated conversation about opportunities in which each profession could help the other to provide optimal care for their patients. This interaction appeared to dispel assumptions and build trust. Results of this project may provide pharmacists with the confidence to reach out to their physician colleagues to improve efficiencies and overall patient care.
PMCID: PMC4065845  PMID: 24440119
Patient Care Coordination; Physician-Pharmacist Collaboration; Conflict Management; Interprofessional Teamwork; Patient-centered medical home
2.  The Association of Subjective Workload Dimensions on Quality of Care and Pharmacist Quality of Work Life 
Workload has been described both objectively (e.g., number of prescriptions dispensed per pharmacist) as well as subjectively (e.g., pharmacist’s perception of busyness). These approaches might be missing important characteristics of pharmacist workload that have not been previously identified and measured.
To measure the association of community pharmacists’ workload perceptions at three levels (organization, job, and task) with job satisfaction, burnout, and perceived performance of two tasks in the medication dispensing process.
A secondary data analysis was performed using cross-sectional survey data collected from Wisconsin (US) community pharmacists. Organization–related workload was measured as staffing adequacy; job-related workload was measured as general and specific job demands; task-related workload was measured as internal and external mental demands. Pharmacists’ perceived task performance was assessed for patient profile review and patient consultation. The survey was administered to a random sample of 500 pharmacists who were asked to opt in if they were a community pharmacist. Descriptive statistics and correlations of study variables were determined. Two structural equation models were estimated to examine relationships between the study variables and perceived task performance.
From the 224 eligible community pharmacists that agreed to participate, 165 (73.7%) usable surveys were completed and returned. Job satisfaction and job-related monitoring demands had direct positive associations with both dispensing tasks. External task demands were negatively related to perceived patient consultation performance. Indirect effects on both tasks were primarily mediated through job satisfaction, which was positively related to staffing adequacy and cognitive job demands and negatively related to volume job demands. External task demands had an additional indirect effect on perceived patient consultation performance, as it was associated with lower levels of job satisfaction and higher levels of burnout.
Allowing community pharmacists to concentrate on tasks and limiting interruptions while performing these tasks are important factors in improving quality of patient care and pharmacist work life. The results have implications for strategies to improve patient safety and pharmacist performance.
PMCID: PMC3805762  PMID: 23791360
Community Pharmacy; Workload; Medication Safety; Structural Equation Modeling
3.  How do Community Pharmacies Recover from E-prescription Errors? 
The use of e-prescribing is increasing annually, with over 788 million e-prescriptions received in US pharmacies in 2012. Approximately 9% of e-prescriptions have medication errors.
To describe the process used by community pharmacy staff to detect, explain, and correct e-prescription errors.
The error recovery conceptual framework was employed for data collection and analysis. 13 pharmacists and 14 technicians from five community pharmacies in Wisconsin participated in the study. A combination of data collection methods were utilized, including direct observations, interviews, and focus groups. The transcription and content analysis of recordings were guided by the three-step error recovery model.
Most of the e-prescription errors were detected during the entering of information into the pharmacy system. These errors were detected by both pharmacists and technicians using a variety of strategies which included: (1) performing double checks of e-prescription information; (2) printing the e-prescription to paper and confirming the information on the computer screen with information from the paper printout; and (3) using colored pens to highlight important information. Strategies used for explaining errors included: (1) careful review of patient’ medication history; (2) pharmacist consultation with patients; (3) consultation with another pharmacy team member; and (4) use of online resources. In order to correct e-prescription errors, participants made educated guesses of the prescriber’s intent or contacted the prescriber via telephone or fax. When e-prescription errors were encountered in the community pharmacies, the primary goal of participants was to get the order right for patients by verifying the prescriber’s intent.
Pharmacists and technicians play an important role in preventing e-prescription errors through the detection of errors and the verification of prescribers’ intent. Future studies are needed to examine factors that facilitate or hinder recovery from e-prescription errors.
PMCID: PMC4045654  PMID: 24373898
Electronic prescribing; E-prescribing; Medication Errors; Error Recovery; Community Pharmacy
4.  A qualitative assessment of a community pharmacy cognitive pharmaceutical services program, using a work system approach 
Although lack of time, trained personnel, and reimbursement have been identified as barriers to pharmacists providing cognitive pharmaceutical services (CPS) in community pharmacies, the underlying contributing factors of these barriers have not been explored. One approach to better understand barriers and facilitators to providing CPS is to use a work system approach to examine different components of a work system and how the components may impact care processes.
The goals of this study were to identify and describe pharmacy work system characteristics that pharmacists identified and changed to provide CPS in a demonstration program.
A qualitative approach was used for data collection. A purposive sample of 8 pharmacists at 6 community pharmacies participating in a demonstration program was selected to be interviewed. Each semistructured interview was audio recorded and transcribed, and the text was analyzed in a descriptive and interpretive manner by 3 analysts. Themes were identified in the text and aligned with 1 of 5 components of the Systems Engineering Initiative for Patient Safety (SEIPS) work system model (organization, tasks, tools/technology, people, and environment).
A total of 21 themes were identified from the interviews, and 7 themes were identified across all 6 interviews. The organization component of the SEIPS model contained the most (n = 10) themes. Numerous factors within a pharmacy work system appear important to enable pharmacists to provide CPS. Leadership and foresight by the organization to implement processes (communication, coordination, planning, etc.) to facilitate providing CPS was a key finding across the interviews. Expanding technician responsibilities was reported to be essential for successfully implementing CPS.
To be successful in providing CPS, pharmacists must be cognizant of the different components of the pharmacy work system and how these components influence providing CPS.
PMCID: PMC3351586  PMID: 21824822
Medication therapy management; Community pharmacy; Human factors; Work systems

Results 1-4 (4)