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Pharmacy, Volume 9, Issue 1 (March 2021) – 68 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Community pharmacy services have evolved to include medical and pharmaceutical interventions alongside dispensing. The use of pharmacogenomics (PGx) to support a personalized medicines approach, therefore, sits naturally within the scope of community pharmacy practice. While established PGx testing is available throughout the Netherlands, this is primarily based in hospital environments and for specialist medicines. As such, the aim of this evaluation was to describe how best to implement PGx services within community pharmacies in the Netherlands, considering potential barriers and enablers to service delivery and how to address them. The results presented in this article add to the evidence in understanding how PGx can be delivered effectively within the community pharmacy environment with the aim of helping to improve patient safety, consequently leading to better outcomes for [...] Read more.
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Article
Assessment of Pharmacist’s Knowledge and Perception toward 3D Printing Technology as a Dispensing Method for Personalized Medicine and the Readiness for Implementation
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 68; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010068 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1285
Abstract
The main user of three dimensional (3D) printing for drug dispensing will be the hospital pharmacist. Yet despite the tremendous amount of research and industrial initiatives, there is no evaluation of the pharmacist’s knowledge and opinion of this technology. The present study aimed [...] Read more.
The main user of three dimensional (3D) printing for drug dispensing will be the hospital pharmacist. Yet despite the tremendous amount of research and industrial initiatives, there is no evaluation of the pharmacist’s knowledge and opinion of this technology. The present study aimed to assess knowledge and attitude among pharmacists about 3D printing technology as an innovative dispensing method for personalized medicine and the barriers to implementation in Saudi Arabia. We found that 53% of participants were aware of 3D printing technology in general, but only 14–16% of pharmacists were aware of the specific application of 3D printing in drug dispensing. Participants showed a positive perception regarding the concept of personalized medicine and that 3D printing could provide a promising solution to formulate and dispense personalized medicine in the pharmacy. It was also found that 67% of pharmacists were encouraged to adopt this new technology for drug dispensing, reflecting their willingness to learn new innovations. However, the technology cost, regulation, and the shortage of practicing pharmacists were also reported as the top barriers for implementation. Facilitating the implementation of this technology in the pharmacy practice will require a strategic plan in which pharmacists collaborate with regulatory bodies and 3D printing engineers to overcome challenges and barriers to implement such promising technology. Full article
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Systematic Review
A Narrative Systematic Literature Review: A Focus on Qualitative Studies on HIV and Medication-Assisted Therapy in the United States
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 67; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010067 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1107
Abstract
Over the last two decades, the United States (U.S.) has experienced an opioid crisis that has had a significant negative societal and economic impact. Due to the high utilization of opioids in Persons Living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA), there is a need [...] Read more.
Over the last two decades, the United States (U.S.) has experienced an opioid crisis that has had a significant negative societal and economic impact. Due to the high utilization of opioids in Persons Living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA), there is a need for a qualitative literature review that presents opioid-use related problems in this population. This study aims to present and identify a thematic overview of the qualitative manuscripts on PLWHA who take opioid medications in the U.S., with a focus on perceptions surrounding medication assisted therapy. The systematic literature search was performed in December 2019. Four databases were searched: PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Web of Science, and Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature (CINAHL). A total of 5348 results were exported from databases into EndNote x9, and duplicates were removed for a total of 3039 unique abstracts to screen. The records were imported into Rayyan, an online platform designed to expedite the screening process. Three authors screened titles and abstracts and determined 19 articles that would be screened in full text. On 9 April 2020, it was determined that eight articles would be included for review. The analysis of the eight manuscripts that fit the inclusion and exclusion criteria revealed barriers and facilitators to medication assisted therapy (MAT) in PLWHA. This review communicates or describes the story of PLWHA who might have delayed access to HIV healthcare providers and the commencement of antiretroviral therapy. In the literature, several studies have focused on the role of physicians in prescribing and addressing the medication regimens but none of the studies examined the role of pharmacists in access to care in this population. Therefore, further research is needed for a better understanding of the social aspects of taking opioid medications in PLWHA and the role of pharmacists within the continuum of care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacist Roles Supporting Safe, Appropriate Opioid Use)
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Article
Evaluation of a Multidisciplinary Bachelor Course on Pain with Autonomy-Supportive Teaching Strategies through the Lens of Self-Determination Theory
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 66; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010066 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1109
Abstract
To stimulate learners’ autonomy, autonomy-supportive teaching strategies were included in the design of a multidisciplinary elective course on pain. During this course, students explored pain from different disciplinary angles, i.e., from biomedical, psychological, arts, philosophical, and anthropological perspectives. In the course, autonomy was [...] Read more.
To stimulate learners’ autonomy, autonomy-supportive teaching strategies were included in the design of a multidisciplinary elective course on pain. During this course, students explored pain from different disciplinary angles, i.e., from biomedical, psychological, arts, philosophical, and anthropological perspectives. In the course, autonomy was stimulated by giving students freedom of choice, especially in their final assignments. The aim of this study was to explore students’ freedom of choice and students’ perceptions of the multidisciplinary course on pain, particularly students’ perception of autonomy in the light of self-determination theory (SDT). To address the aim of this study, a mixed methods approach was used. Directed content analysis was conducted on a reflective part of the final individual assignment and was used to find categories fitting within SDT and also outside it. In addition to this, the diversity of topics as well as different disciplines present in the final individual assignments was explored to demonstrate students’ freedom of choice. This study shows that the course setup supported students’ autonomy and relatedness and stimulated students’ interest in and relevance to pain. Moreover, it stimulated students’ freedom of choice and stimulated curiosity towards disciplines such as arts and philosophy. Therefore, it can be concluded that we successfully developed a multidisciplinary course on pain in which students are exposed to different autonomy-supportive teaching strategies based on the SDT framework. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Curriculum Development)
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Article
Analysis of Dispensing Errors Made by First-Year Pharmacy Students in a Virtual Dispensing Assessment
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 65; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010065 - 20 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1199
Abstract
Pharmacists have a crucial role in the supply of medications and ensuring optimal patient outcomes. However, with the increased use of prescription medications, there is a potential for dispensing errors to occur. Some dispensing errors can result in patient harm, with some leading [...] Read more.
Pharmacists have a crucial role in the supply of medications and ensuring optimal patient outcomes. However, with the increased use of prescription medications, there is a potential for dispensing errors to occur. Some dispensing errors can result in patient harm, with some leading to death. The development of safe and accurate dispensing skills in pharmacy students is an essential part of the pharmacy curriculum to prevent such dispensing errors from occurring. A retrospective study was conducted on a virtual dispensing assessment completed by first-year pharmacy students using MyDispense at Monash University. Students were assessed on their ability to safely and accurately dispense four prescriptions. The students’ answers in the assessment were then analyzed using qualitative and quantitative methods. Errors in drug quantity, number of repeats, product, patient and prescriber selection were quantitatively analyzed. Through the development of a codebook, frequency of errors was determined for label directions and appropriate use of ancillary labels. In this study, the dispensing errors that were identified depended on the class of medication. Errors in label directions were most common, with the majority of errors displaying incorrect route of administration, drug formulation and/or frequency of dosing. Identified errors were then further categorized into potential severity of harm, ranging from “no harm” to “severe harm”. The findings from this study show the types of errors made by students that are preventable and the potential for first-year pharmacy students to benefit from more comprehensive introductions to dispensing guides and safe environments to practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
Review
Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizers in COVID-19 Prevention: A Multidimensional Perspective
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 64; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010064 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1855
Abstract
The global use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (ABHS) as an important means of controlling the transmission of infectious disease has increased significantly as governments and public health agencies across the world advocated hand hygiene as a preventative measure during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although [...] Read more.
The global use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (ABHS) as an important means of controlling the transmission of infectious disease has increased significantly as governments and public health agencies across the world advocated hand hygiene as a preventative measure during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the performance of these products is most commonly defined as a function of their alcohol concentration, they are multifaceted products in which an interplay of several factors is important in determining efficacy. This paper discusses the interplay between ABHS input (formulation) factors and output (product performance) factors in the context of a multidimensional perspective using a novel representative paradigm. In the model, represented in the form of a three-dimensional tetrahedron, each of the faces represents inputs in the manufacturing of the ABHS product, which are the type and amount of alcohol, the inactive ingredients, the formulation and the manufacturing practices. The four corners of the tetrahedron represent the product performance factors which include product efficacy, sensory characteristics, usage and compliance and product safety. The multidimensional approach to the formulation and evaluation of ABHS shows that several factors contribute to the effectiveness and utility of these products. The paradigm provides a useful framework for manufacturers of ABHS and related healthcare products. Full article
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Article
An Assessment of Pharmacy School Curricula in Florida and Inactivated Influenza Vaccine (IIV) Administration to Pregnant Women
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 63; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010063 - 18 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1041
Abstract
Background: There is a high risk for morbidity and mortality in pregnant women associated with influenza virus illness. Vaccine uptake rates in pregnant women remain lower than the targeted Healthy People 2020 goals despite recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Few [...] Read more.
Background: There is a high risk for morbidity and mortality in pregnant women associated with influenza virus illness. Vaccine uptake rates in pregnant women remain lower than the targeted Healthy People 2020 goals despite recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Few studies have examined the role of the pharmacist in providing immunization services to pregnant women, fewer still have directly examined the PharmD curricula and the perspectives of pharmacy students on how they perceive their role in providing influenza inactivated vaccine (IIV) to pregnant women. Objective: This study examined the PharmD curricula instruction with regard to immunizing pregnant women and how pharmacy students perceive it. Methods: Semi-structured, in-depth, in-person qualitative interviews were conducted with the six Academic Deans of the accredited schools of pharmacy in Florida, and three focus group sessions were held with third- and fourth-year pharmacy students (n = 18) in Florida. A thematic analysis was conducted. Results: Most academic deans reported providing instruction on immunization in schools with respect to vaccine administration in pregnant women and called for a need for all schools to make it compulsory to include pregnant-women-specific content. Pharmacy students reported a gap in knowledge of content related to administering the IIV in pregnant women, but feel that when presented with the opportunity, they will be willing to provide IIV to pregnant women. Conclusions: Pharmacists are in a good position to play a role in increasing IIV rates among pregnant women. Implications for practice include the need for incorporation of pregnancy-specific content to immunization curricula. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Education Development)
Article
Remote OSCE Experience: What First Year Pharmacy Students Liked, Learned, and Suggested for Future Implementations
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 62; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010062 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1194
Abstract
During the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools quickly transitioned their teaching and assessment strategies to online formats. In Spring 2020, a 3-station remote Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) was implemented for first-year pharmacy students. The day following the remote OSCEs students [...] Read more.
During the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools quickly transitioned their teaching and assessment strategies to online formats. In Spring 2020, a 3-station remote Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) was implemented for first-year pharmacy students. The day following the remote OSCEs students answered three open-text prompts about the remote OSCE experience: (1) “I liked...”, (2) “I learned…”, and (3) “I suggest…”. Responses were open-coded and frequency counts were calculated to determine the most prevalent codes. Concept maps were created to visualize and explore connections between the codes. Out of 157 students, 156 students completed the reflection assignment, a 99.36% response rate. The three major themes in the Liked data were: Logistics (n = 65, 41.7%), Differences In-person Versus Remote (n = 59, 37.8%), and Skill Development (n = 43, 27.6%). The three major themes in the Learned data were: Technology (n = 66, 42.3%), Communication (n = 58, 37.2%), and Skill Development (n = 56, 35.9%). The three major themes in the Suggest data were: Logistics (n = 89, 57.1%), Technology (n = 31, 19.9%), and Continuation of Remote OSCE (n = 31, 19.9%). Overall, the remote OSCE experience was well-received, and students described it as applicable to their future pharmacy practice. Future work should explore the design, implementation, and outcomes of remote OSCEs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
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Article
Uptake and User Characteristics for Pharmacy-Based Contraception and Chlamydia Treatment: A Quantitative Retrospective Study from the UK
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 61; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010061 - 17 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1138
Abstract
The health provider Umbrella delivers several SRHS through more than 120 pharmacies in Birmingham (England). Umbrella pharmacy data collected between August 2015 and August 2018 were used to descriptively analyse the uptake and user characteristics for emergency contraception, short-acting oral contraception, condoms and [...] Read more.
The health provider Umbrella delivers several SRHS through more than 120 pharmacies in Birmingham (England). Umbrella pharmacy data collected between August 2015 and August 2018 were used to descriptively analyse the uptake and user characteristics for emergency contraception, short-acting oral contraception, condoms and chlamydia treatment. In total, 54,309 pharmacy visits were analysed. A total of 30,473 females presented for emergency contraception. Most were supplied with an emergency contraceptive pill (98.6%, 30,052 out of 30,473), which was levonorgestrel in 57.4% of cases (17,255 out of 30,052). Of those females who attended for short-acting oral contraception, 54.3% (1764 out of 3247) were provided with the progesterone-only pill. Of those who were given chlamydia treatment, the majority received doxycycline (76.8%, 454 out of 591). A total of 74% (14,888 out of 19,998) of those who requested condoms were not provided with specific instructions on their use. Pharmacies have the potential to make a substantial contribution to the delivery of an integrated sexual health service including rapid access to emergency contraception, convenient delivery of short-acting hormonal contraception and treatment of chlamydia. Appropriate education, support and audit is required to ensure the delivery of high-quality care. Full article
Commentary
Measuring Medicine Use: Applying ATC/DDD Methodology to Real-World Data
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 60; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010060 - 17 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1158
Abstract
Medicines are essential for the treatment of acute, communicable, and non-communicable diseases. The World Health Organization developed a toolkit for drug (medicine) utilization studies to assist in reviewing and evaluating the prescribing, dispensing, and use of medicines. There is a growing need for [...] Read more.
Medicines are essential for the treatment of acute, communicable, and non-communicable diseases. The World Health Organization developed a toolkit for drug (medicine) utilization studies to assist in reviewing and evaluating the prescribing, dispensing, and use of medicines. There is a growing need for rigorous studies of medicine use in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) using standard approaches, especially in the context of universal health coverage. This commentary provides a succinct summary of how to use the WHO anatomical therapeutic chemical (ATC)/defined daily dose (DDD) methodology in pharmacoepidemiological studies, with a focus on LMIC contexts. We drew on information from WHO resources and published literature, citing examples and case studies. We encourage readers to publish their drug utilization studies, although we caution about predatory journals. We recommend the use of the RECORD-PE initiative which focuses on methods for doing pharmacoepidemiological research and evaluating the quality of published papers. Full article
Article
Looking Ahead to 2030: Survey of Evolving Needs in Pharmacy Education
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 59; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010059 - 17 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1144
Abstract
In order to keep pharmacy education relevant to a rapidly-evolving future, this study sought to identify key insights from leaders from a broad array of pharmacy and non-pharmacy industries on the future of the pharmacy profession, pharmaceutical sciences, and pharmacy education. Thought leaders [...] Read more.
In order to keep pharmacy education relevant to a rapidly-evolving future, this study sought to identify key insights from leaders from a broad array of pharmacy and non-pharmacy industries on the future of the pharmacy profession, pharmaceutical sciences, and pharmacy education. Thought leaders representing a variety of industries were surveyed regarding their perspectives on the future of pharmacy practice, pharmaceutical science disciplines, and pharmacy education in seven domains. From 46 completed surveys, top challenges/threats were barriers that limit clinical practice opportunities, excessive supply of pharmacists, and high drug costs. Major changes in the drug distribution system, automation/robotics, and new therapeutic approaches were identified as the top technological disrupters. Key drivers of pharmacy education included the primary care provider shortage, growing use of technology and data, and rising drug costs. The most significant sources of job growth outside of retail and hospital settings were managed care organizations, technology/biotech/pharmaceutical companies, and ambulatory care practices. Needs in the industry included clinical management of complex patients, leadership and management, pharmaceutical scientists, and implementation science. Knowledge gaps were pharmacists not recognizing their value on the health care team, preparation to embrace and lead change, and expertise in data science and analytics. Pharmacy schools will need to address several disruptive trends to future-proof their curricula, including expanding patient management skills, leadership and management training, technology, and data analytics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmacy Education and Student / Practitioner Training)
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Review
The Validity of the Theory of Planned Behaviour for Understanding People’s Beliefs and Intentions toward Reusing Medicines
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 58; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010058 - 09 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1294
Abstract
Background: many factors can impact a person’s behaviour. When the behaviour is subject to prediction, these factors can include, for example, the perceived advantages and disadvantages of performing the behaviour, normative beliefs, and whether the behaviour is thought to be achievable. This paper [...] Read more.
Background: many factors can impact a person’s behaviour. When the behaviour is subject to prediction, these factors can include, for example, the perceived advantages and disadvantages of performing the behaviour, normative beliefs, and whether the behaviour is thought to be achievable. This paper examines intentions to engage in medicines reuse, i.e., to accept medicines that are returned unused to a pharmacy to be reused. The paper aims to outline the validity of the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) for understanding people’s intentions to engage in medicines reuse by examining this against other long-standing health-related psychological theories of behavioural change. Thus, the Health Belief Model (HBM), Protection Motivation Theory (PMT), Trans-Theoretical Model of Health Behaviour Change (TTM/SoC), Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA), and TPB are examined for their application in the study of medicines reuse. Discussion: the HBM, PMT, TTM/SoC, TRA, and TPB were assessed for their relevance to examining medicines reuse as a behaviour. The validity of the TPB was justified for the development of a Medication Reuse Questionnaire (MRQ) to explore people’s beliefs and intention toward reusing medicines. Conclusion: TPB has been widely used inside and outside of health-related research and it was found to have more accurately defined constructs, making it helpful in studying medicines reuse behaviour. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medicines Reuse)
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Commentary
Empowering Public Health Pharmacy Practice—Moving from Collaborative Practice Agreements to Provider Status in the U.S.
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 57; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010057 - 09 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1252
Abstract
This article describes the history and evolution of pharmacist-physician collaborative practice agreements (CPAs) in the United States with future directions to support pharmacists’ provider status as the profession continues to evolve from product-oriented to patient-centered care and population health. The pharmacy profession has [...] Read more.
This article describes the history and evolution of pharmacist-physician collaborative practice agreements (CPAs) in the United States with future directions to support pharmacists’ provider status as the profession continues to evolve from product-oriented to patient-centered care and population health. The pharmacy profession has a long history of dispensing and compounding, with the addition of clinical roles in the late 20th century. These clinical roles have continued to expand into diverse arenas such as communicable and non-communicable diseases, antimicrobial stewardship, emergency preparedness and response, public health education and health promotion, and critical and emergency care. Pharmacists continue to serve as integral members of interprofessional and interdisciplinary healthcare teams. In this context, CPAs allow pharmacists to expand their roles in patient care and may be considered as a step towards securing provider status. Moving beyond CPAs to a provider status would enable pharmacists to be reimbursed for cognitive services and promote integrated public health delivery models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacist Services Ⅱ)
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Article
Assessing a Mass-Based Method for the Preparation of Low-Dosed Paediatric Capsules with Baclofen and Spironolactone
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 56; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010056 - 08 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1024
Abstract
Despite the steadily improving medical care situation in pediatrics, some drugs are still not available in a suitable dose or dosage form and thus need to be prepared extemporaneously. Capsules can be easily compounded at the hospital and public pharmacies, offering an alternative [...] Read more.
Despite the steadily improving medical care situation in pediatrics, some drugs are still not available in a suitable dose or dosage form and thus need to be prepared extemporaneously. Capsules can be easily compounded at the hospital and public pharmacies, offering an alternative to liquid formulations. This study aims at testing a mass-based approach for the extemporaneous preparation of low-dose pediatric capsules and investigating systematically the API loss during this procedure. A total of 54 capsule batches were prepared with baclofen and spironolactone as pediatric-relevant drugs. The hard capsules were prepared using three different bulking agents consisting of either mannitol, lactose-monohydrate and microcrystalline cellulose mixed with 0.5% colloidal silica. Capsules were tested according to Ph. Eur. method “2.9.40 Content Uniformity” as well as for occurring powder loss and mass uniformity. The results reveal that the mass-based approach, in general, allows the preparation of low-dose pediatric capsules of appropriate quality. However, absolute quality is highly dependent on the homogeneity of the powder mixture and the use of defined parameters for capsule preparation. Full article
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Case Report
‘Prescription’ for Purposeful Adaptation of Professionalism-and-Ethics Teaching Strategies for Remote Delivery
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 55; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010055 - 07 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1082
Abstract
This case report outlines the strategies underpinning the adaptation of professionalism and ethics strand (P&E) teaching for remote delivery on a Pharmacy programme in response to COVID-19 restrictions. In line with national and University guidance, P&E teaching detailed in this report was delivered [...] Read more.
This case report outlines the strategies underpinning the adaptation of professionalism and ethics strand (P&E) teaching for remote delivery on a Pharmacy programme in response to COVID-19 restrictions. In line with national and University guidance, P&E teaching detailed in this report was delivered online in late 2020. Sessions were generally live and recorded, although some content was pre-recorded using video-capture software. All learning activities, recordings and supporting resources are accessible to students on the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. This report reflects on the curriculum, pedagogy and content of P&E teaching, with particular emphasis on teaching related to professional identity formation and moral reasoning competencies development. Design, development and delivery of remote online teaching is considered in the context of P&E teaching. Strategies used to plan for adaptation and delivery of interactive online teaching sessions aligned with P&E teaching are described. Key findings support a scholarship of teaching approach when planning for adaptation to remote online teaching. Purposeful consideration of existing curricular, pedagogical and instructional design enables the teacher to identify critical P&E teaching activities potentially compromised by the move to the online environment. Informed integration of available instructional tools to teaching activities follows. The report concludes with recommendations for future research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
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Article
What Do Young Adults Think about the Safety of Over-the-Counter Analgesics? Findings from a Cross-Sectional Survey
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 54; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010054 - 05 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1106
Abstract
Analgesics are commonly used over-the-counter (OTC) medicines readily available for purchase, sometimes without advice of a health professional. However, analgesics can cause harm even when taken according to dosing recommendations. Young adults may be more vulnerable to harm if they perceive low risk [...] Read more.
Analgesics are commonly used over-the-counter (OTC) medicines readily available for purchase, sometimes without advice of a health professional. However, analgesics can cause harm even when taken according to dosing recommendations. Young adults may be more vulnerable to harm if they perceive low risk with OTC analgesic use, or struggle to interpret dosing instructions. This study aimed to explore factors affecting how young adults use OTC analgesics and associated perceptions of safety. An online survey was distributed to school-leavers and university students (17 to 25 years), in South-East Queensland, Australia, in the period November–December 2019. Most of the 302 respondents (school-leavers n = 147, university students n = 155) did not use analgesics frequently. School-leavers deferred to parents for analgesic information, while university students preferred the internet. The majority of respondents appeared safety conscious and did not take outside indicated use or instructions. However, a small proportion reported taking analgesics for an inappropriate indication. The difference in preferred source of analgesic information may reflect experience with analgesic use, increasing autonomy or decreased parental influence. Whilst it is encouraging that the majority of young adults appeared safety conscious, greater insight is needed into factors influencing decision making on OTC use, e.g., medicines knowledge, and changes with increasing age. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medicines Use)
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Article
A Longitudinal Assessment of the Quality of Insulin Prescribing with Different Prescribing Systems
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 53; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010053 - 05 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1135
Abstract
Accurate and complete prescriptions of insulin are crucial to prevent medication errors from occurring. Two core components for safe insulin prescriptions are the word ‘units’ being written in full for the dose, and clear documentation of the insulin device alongside the name. A [...] Read more.
Accurate and complete prescriptions of insulin are crucial to prevent medication errors from occurring. Two core components for safe insulin prescriptions are the word ‘units’ being written in full for the dose, and clear documentation of the insulin device alongside the name. A retrospective review of annual audit data was conducted for insulin prescriptions to assess the impact of changes to the prescribing system within a secondary care setting, at five time points over a period of 7 years (2014 to 2020). The review points were based on when changes were made, from standardized paper charts with a dedicated section for insulin prescribing, to a standalone hospital wide electronic prescribing and medicines administration (ePMA) system, and finally an integrated electronic health record system (EHRS). The measured outcomes were compliance with recommended standards for documentation of ‘units’ in full, and inclusion of the insulin device as part of the prescription. Overall, an improvement was seen in both outcomes of interest. Device documentation improved incrementally with each system change—34% for paper charts, 23%–56% for standalone ePMA, and 100% for ePMA integrated within EHRS. Findings highlight that differences in ePMA systems may have varying impact on safe prescribing practices. Full article
Article
Transitioning Competency-Based Communication Assessments to the Online Platform: Examples and Student Outcomes
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 52; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010052 - 05 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1054
Abstract
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, pharmacy education has shifted from in-person teaching and assessments to the virtual environment. Many education programs had previously adopted objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs) to assess communication abilities in-person with standardized patients (SPs). However, comparative student outcome [...] Read more.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, pharmacy education has shifted from in-person teaching and assessments to the virtual environment. Many education programs had previously adopted objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs) to assess communication abilities in-person with standardized patients (SPs). However, comparative student outcome data between virtual and in-person methods as well as guidance on how to conduct communication-based OSCEs in the virtual environment is lacking. The University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (SSPPS) describes its methods of conducting two types of communication-based OSCEs (patient counseling and gathering a medical history). Student performance data from the two virtual OSCEs in 2020 was compared to results from two 2019 in-person OSCEs using Mann Whitney U Tests. The 2020 cohort scored significantly higher than the 2019 cohort in all variables (i.e., using effective verbal and non-verbal communication, using patient friendly education, organizing the encounter, demonstrating empathy, establishing trust, professionalism) and in overall score. However, the effect size for these findings indicate the differences between performances are generally small and more likely due to changes in grading patterns due to the pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
Article
Helping Québec Pharmacists Seize the Vaccination Service Opportunity: The Pharmacy Best Practice Workshops
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 51; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010051 - 03 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1310
Abstract
Vaccinations are a safe and effective way to protect against infectious diseases. The World Health Organization estimates vaccines have saved more lives than any other interventions and every year about two to three million deaths are averted worldwide through immunization. To improve vaccination [...] Read more.
Vaccinations are a safe and effective way to protect against infectious diseases. The World Health Organization estimates vaccines have saved more lives than any other interventions and every year about two to three million deaths are averted worldwide through immunization. To improve vaccination coverage, pharmacists have been increasingly involved in immunization roles in their communities—as advocates, educators, and immunizers. Community pharmacy-based vaccination services have increased both in the number of immunization providers and the number of sites where patients can receive immunizations. In Canada, health care is under provincial legislation—and so, there are distinct differences in scope of pharmacist practice across the country. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak in early 2020, in Québec, Canada’s second-largest province, pharmacists did not have the authority to administer vaccines. To help prepare pharmacists in Québec to become immunizers, we developed and deployed a series of accredited workshops. In these facilitated workshops, pharmacists were able to share best practices that may lead to providing effective vaccination services, identify common competency gaps, discuss effective patient communication skills, and determine how to target the most vulnerable population groups. Participants were also asked to evaluate the workshop. Our results indicate the evaluation was very reliable in measuring participant satisfaction (Cronbach’s α = 0.94) and pharmacists commented that the workshops’ learning outcomes exceeded their expectations, and the topics covered were relevant and applicable. The evaluation also asked participants to identify weaknesses of training, so future educational interventions can be planned accordingly. We believe this work will contribute to the continual growth and advancement of the pharmacy profession in Canada. Full article
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Commentary
The Subjective Experience of Using Medications: What We Know and the Paths Forward
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 50; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010050 - 02 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1011
Abstract
Medications can cause bodily changes, where the associated benefits and risks are carefully assessed based on the changes experienced in the phenomenal body. For this reason, the phenomenology of Merleau-Ponty is an important theoretical framework for the study of experience related to the [...] Read more.
Medications can cause bodily changes, where the associated benefits and risks are carefully assessed based on the changes experienced in the phenomenal body. For this reason, the phenomenology of Merleau-Ponty is an important theoretical framework for the study of experience related to the daily use of medications. The aim of this study was to discuss the contribution of a recently developed framework of the general ways people can experience the daily use of medications—resolution, adversity, ambiguity, and irrelevance—and present reflections about the little-understood aspects of this experience. However, some issues raised throughout this article remain open and invite us to further exploration, such as (1) the coexistence of multiple ways of experiencing the use of medications, by the same individual, in a given historical time; (2) the cyclical structure of this experience; (3) the impact of habit and routine on the ways of experiencing the daily use of medications; and (4) the contribution of the concept of existential feelings to this experience and its impact on patients’ decision-making. Therefore, the experience with the daily use of medications is a complex and multifaceted phenomenon that directs the decision-making process of patients, impacting health outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medication Experiences)
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Brief Report
Evaluating the Effect a of Handout on Community Pharmacists’ Opioid Safety Counseling
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 49; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010049 - 28 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1185
Abstract
Community pharmacists are the most accessible healthcare professionals to counsel patients about opioid risks and safety. Resources such as handouts are needed to improve pharmacists’ self-efficacy about opioid safety counseling. This study aims to understand the effects and usefulness of handouts in opioid [...] Read more.
Community pharmacists are the most accessible healthcare professionals to counsel patients about opioid risks and safety. Resources such as handouts are needed to improve pharmacists’ self-efficacy about opioid safety counseling. This study aims to understand the effects and usefulness of handouts in opioid risk and safety counseling in community pharmacists. Three community pharmacies participated in this study for three weeks, where five pharmacists participated in completing a survey about the process and integration of a handout in opioid medication consultation. Pharmacists filled the survey after counseling patients for opioid medication/s. Field observations were conducted at one of these sites as well. A total of 57 consults were recorded via surveys in these pharmacies. Only using the handout to guide the conversation was rated much less useful than integrating the handout and showing it to patient in the consult (β = 0.94, adjusted R2 = 0.29, p < 0.00001). Satisfaction about the patient education provided increased if opioid risks and safety topics were discussed (β = 0.7, adjusted R2 = 0.32, p = 0.00015). Patients seemed engaged in the consults, which was evident from the head nods, questions asked, and attention toward the pharmacist. Effective communication with patients or patient caregivers about opioid safety can be accomplished by using and modeling use of this handout and by providing structured instructions to use this handout optimally. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacist Roles Supporting Safe, Appropriate Opioid Use)
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Article
Integration of a Virtual Dispensing Simulator “MyDispense” in an Experiential Education Program to Prepare Students for Community Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 48; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010048 - 27 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1206
Abstract
Background: Technology is increasingly used to enhance pharmacy education. We sought to evaluate student learning and preparedness for community introductory pharmacy practice experiences (IPPEs) after implementation of “MyDispense” into experiential education. Methods: Both first-year pharmacy students and assigned community IPPE preceptors were eligible. [...] Read more.
Background: Technology is increasingly used to enhance pharmacy education. We sought to evaluate student learning and preparedness for community introductory pharmacy practice experiences (IPPEs) after implementation of “MyDispense” into experiential education. Methods: Both first-year pharmacy students and assigned community IPPE preceptors were eligible. Students were stratified based on previous community pharmacy experience (< or ≥ 50 h), then randomized to complete MyDispense exercises before IPPE (group A) or after 24–32 h of IPPE (group B). We evaluated preceptors’ assessment of student readiness using a 6-item Likert scale survey and students’ readiness and opinion of MyDispense using an anonymous 9-item survey. Descriptive statistics were used to characterize data. The Mann–Whitney U test was used to compare groups and a p-value < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: Of 177 eligible students, 155 were randomized and 56 completed study. Group A included 32 students; 56.3% had prior community practice experience. Group B included 24 students; 50% had prior community practice experience. Forty-eight preceptors were enrolled. Students who completed exercises before rotation received higher preceptor scores for patient counseling of self-care and of medications (p < 0.05 for both). Students self-assessed their counseling skills lower than all other skills; 30.4% and 42.9% of students felt mostly or always prepared to counsel for self-care and medications, respectively. Students found MyDispense straightforward, realistic, and appreciated the ability to practice in a safe, electronic, community pharmacy, patient-care environment. Conclusion: Simulation-based software, such as MyDispense, can enhance learner understanding of the prescription fill and counseling process in a community pharmacy practice setting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
Article
Educational Methods and Technological Innovations for Introductory Experiential Learning Given the Contact-Related Limitations Imposed by the SARS-CoV2/COVID-19 Pandemic
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 47; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010047 - 25 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1075
Abstract
Background: Acute respiratory syndrome related coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has led to substantial changes in pharmacy curricula, including the ability to provide in-person introductory experiential practice experiences (IPPEs) to University of Colorado’s International-Trained PharmD (ITPD) students. Methods: The IPPE course for ITPD students was [...] Read more.
Background: Acute respiratory syndrome related coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has led to substantial changes in pharmacy curricula, including the ability to provide in-person introductory experiential practice experiences (IPPEs) to University of Colorado’s International-Trained PharmD (ITPD) students. Methods: The IPPE course for ITPD students was redesigned to offer remote educational activities in the health system setting and simulated practice and communication activities in the community setting. Students were evaluated via surveys regarding the perceived value of these changes, and changes in knowledge, skills and abilities before and after activities. Results: A total of 6 students were enrolled in the revised IPPE course. Students agreed or strongly agreed that the overall distance-based IPPE experience, the remote health system activities, and the community activities were valuable. Students also strongly agreed that course design successfully met course outcomes and was relevant to pharmacy practice. In terms of knowledge, skills and abilities, numeric improvements were observed in remote health system activities and community-based simulated patient interactions, but results were not statistically significant. A high baseline level of knowledge led to minimal improvements in perceptions of improvement in community pharmacy skills regarding pharmacy simulation software. Conclusion: Implementation of distance-based IPPE activities may be an alternate educational modality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
Article
Challenges Faced by Health Professionals in Obtaining Correct Medication Information in the Absence of a Shared Digital Medication List
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 46; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010046 - 22 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1133
Abstract
Information about patient medication use is usually registered and stored in different digital systems, making it difficult to share information across health care organisations. The lack of digital systems able to share medication information poses a threat to patient safety and quality of [...] Read more.
Information about patient medication use is usually registered and stored in different digital systems, making it difficult to share information across health care organisations. The lack of digital systems able to share medication information poses a threat to patient safety and quality of care. We explored the experiences of health professionals with obtaining and exchanging information on patient medication lists in Norwegian primary health care within the context of current digital and non-digital solutions. We used a qualitative research design with semi-structured interviews, including general practitioners (n = 6), pharmacists (n = 3), nurses (n = 17) and medical doctors (n = 6) from six municipalities in Norway. Our findings revealed the following five challenges characterised by being cut off from information on patient medication lists in the current digital and non-digital solutions: ‘fragmentation of information systems’, ‘perceived risk of errors’, ‘excessive time use’, ‘dependency on others’ and ‘uncertainty’. The challenges were particularly related to patient transitions between levels of care. Our study shows an urgent need for digital solutions to ensure seamless, up-to-date information about patient medication lists in order to prevent medication-related problems. Future digital solutions for a shared medication list should address these challenges directly to ensure patient safety and quality of care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Solutions to Improve Medication Management)
Article
Students’ Feedback on the Development of a Competency-Based Pharmacy Education (CBPE) at the University of Tartu, Estonia
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 45; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010045 - 19 Feb 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1142
Abstract
Increasing need in society to provide collaborative and patient-centered pharmaceutical care has to be addressed in curriculum development. Principles of competency-based pharmacy education (CBPE) could be seen as one solution to the new professional challenges of pharmacists. At the University of Tartu (UT), [...] Read more.
Increasing need in society to provide collaborative and patient-centered pharmaceutical care has to be addressed in curriculum development. Principles of competency-based pharmacy education (CBPE) could be seen as one solution to the new professional challenges of pharmacists. At the University of Tartu (UT), the Pharmacy curriculum was updated in 2019 to introduce principles of CBPE. The aim of this study was to gather initial students’ feedback on the development of CBPE at the UT. The survey was conducted in the spring semester of the 2019/2020 academic year to collect feedback about all curricula at the UT. All 1st, 3rd, and 5th year pharmacy students (n = 67) were invited and 70.1% (N = 47) of them also participated in this study in order to evaluate the Pharmacy curriculum. Pharmacy students were more complacent with the content and less with the fixed structure of the Pharmacy curriculum. Students emphasized more theoretical knowledge and less practical and transferable skills of the competencies developed over the studies. Initial student feedback on the development of CBPE in Estonia demonstrated that theoretical knowledge needs to be more integrated with practice throughout the curriculum. In the future, more attention should be paid to the development of transferable skills, including digital skills. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Curriculum Development)
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Article
Education Satisfaction among Pharmacy Graduates in Sweden
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 44; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010044 - 18 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1216
Abstract
Education satisfaction is considered important for development of a professional identity and to increase learning. The aim was to investigate and compare education satisfaction over time among pharmacists who have graduated from the pharmacy programs at Umeå University, Sweden. Data concerning education satisfaction [...] Read more.
Education satisfaction is considered important for development of a professional identity and to increase learning. The aim was to investigate and compare education satisfaction over time among pharmacists who have graduated from the pharmacy programs at Umeå University, Sweden. Data concerning education satisfaction were collected using an alumni survey of pharmacists who graduated between 2015 and 2018. This was compared with pharmacists graduating between 2006 and 2014. The majority of the pharmacy graduates were very satisfied with their education (96%) and thought that the programs gave them a clear professional identity (92%). No differences in education satisfaction between graduation years 2015 and 2018 and 2006 and 2014 were found. A majority of the graduates considered that the knowledge and skills acquired during their education were useful in their present job (83%). Of the graduates who thought that the studies gave them a clear professional identity, a higher proportion were satisfied with their job (p < 0.001) and thought that their work duties reflected their studies (p = 0.005). Exploring education satisfaction may help educators to further develop the education and to better prepare the students for their professional working life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmacy Education and Student / Practitioner Training)
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Article
PaCE Yourself: Impact of COVID-19 on Patient-Centered Care Experience
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 43; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010043 - 18 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1102
Abstract
(1) Background: The outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, forced colleges of pharmacy to implement new online learning methodologies to ensure that students could complete required courses. This transition was especially acute for laboratory simulation courses that require students to practice professional skills. [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, forced colleges of pharmacy to implement new online learning methodologies to ensure that students could complete required courses. This transition was especially acute for laboratory simulation courses that require students to practice professional skills. This study aims to compare student assessment performance within a simulation-based laboratory course for students who completed the module prior to and after the online transition. (2) Methods: This study was a retrospective cohort comparison of student outcome performance with two distinct content delivery methods. Students were organized into two tracks at the beginning of the semester to determine the order of the simulation module. The online learning transition occurred in-between the delivery of the same module, which allowed comparison of online versus in-person content delivery with consistent assessment. Remediation rates on each assessment were compared using chi-squared tests. (3) Results: Student pharmacists across the first and second professional year performed similarly despite in-person or online course formats, with no significant differences in remediation rates. (4) Conclusions: Pharmacy course content, including laboratory-based simulation activity, may produce similar assessment performance when using online content delivery. Further research into hybrid or mixed-delivery models may enhance learning without affecting assessment performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology-Enhanced Pharmacy Teaching and Learning Strategies)
Commentary
Communicative and Discursive Perspectives on the Medication Experience
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 42; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010042 - 17 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1148
Abstract
Taking the ‘medication experience’ in the broad sense of what individuals hear and say about their medication, as well as how they experience it, this paper explores diverse research on medication information available to patients and their modes and capacities for interaction, including [...] Read more.
Taking the ‘medication experience’ in the broad sense of what individuals hear and say about their medication, as well as how they experience it, this paper explores diverse research on medication information available to patients and their modes and capacities for interaction, including personal circles, doctors and pharmacists, labeling and promotion, websites, and the patient’s own inner conversations and self-expression. The goal is to illustrate, for nonspecialists in communication, how the actors, messages, mediums, genres, and contextual factors within a standard ethnographic and social semiotic model of discourse and communication are operating, not always effectively or beneficially, to mediate or construct a patient’s medication experience. We also suggest how disparate insights can be integrated through such a model and might generate new research questions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medication Experiences)
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Article
From Paper to E-Prescribing of Multidose Drug Dispensing: A Qualitative Study of Workflow in a Community Care Setting
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 41; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010041 - 16 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1204
Abstract
E-prescribing is now widespread and, in some countries, has completely replaced paper prescriptions. In Norway, almost all prescribing is electronic, except for multidose drug dispensing (MDD), which is still sent to the pharmacy by fax or ordinary mail. MDD is an adherence aid [...] Read more.
E-prescribing is now widespread and, in some countries, has completely replaced paper prescriptions. In Norway, almost all prescribing is electronic, except for multidose drug dispensing (MDD), which is still sent to the pharmacy by fax or ordinary mail. MDD is an adherence aid used by one-third of all patients receiving home care services. In this paper, we present results from a qualitative study evaluating the introduction of e-prescribing for MDD in a community health care setting. The focus is on the work and workflow for the pharmacists and nurses involved in the medication-handling process. We used the pragmatic process evaluation framework and the systematic text condensation method to analyse the data. We conducted 12 interviews with 34 nurses and pharmacists. This study shows that the e-prescribing of MDD led to greater integration between systems, both within the existing MDD system and across care levels, potentially improving patient safety. However, the structured prescriptions increased the need for clarifications, resulting in an increased overall workload. A greater understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the different professionals in the medication management chain and their needs would improve the workflow of the nurses and pharmacists involved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Solutions to Improve Medication Management)
Communication
A Descriptive Study Examining Trends in Pharmacist-Authored Original Research Publications in the Journal of the American Medical Association Network from 2000 to 2019
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 40; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010040 - 13 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1052
Abstract
Pharmacists are expected to participate in the conduction of research to advance the profession and health care broadly. Additional opportunities for pharmacist research engagement have emerged with the increased integration of clinically trained pharmacists into interprofessional care teams. Research conducted over the past [...] Read more.
Pharmacists are expected to participate in the conduction of research to advance the profession and health care broadly. Additional opportunities for pharmacist research engagement have emerged with the increased integration of clinically trained pharmacists into interprofessional care teams. Research conducted over the past four decades has demonstrated an increasing trend of pharmacist-authored publications in medical journals. The purpose of this study was to build upon this work and investigate trends in pharmacist-authored original research publications within the JAMA Network over the past 20 years. A descriptive study design was used to retrospectively evaluate trends in the numbers of pharmacist-authored publications and authorship within those publications in nine JAMA Network journals. Data were aggregated into ten-year time periods (2000–2009 and 2010–2019) and compared using chi-square and Fisher’s exact tests. Overall, pharmacist-authored publications significantly increased over the ten-year period (2.0% to 3.0%, p < 0.001), including in five specific journals: JAMA, JAMA Dermatology, JAMA Neurology, JAMA Ophthalmology, and JAMA Surgery. There was no change in first—and senior-authored publications. While the overall pharmacist publication trend was positive, room for significant growth remains. A deeper understanding of the barriers and facilitators to pharmacist engagement in research is needed, along with strategies to enhance pharmacist research training. Full article
Article
A Sociotechnical Approach to Analyze Pharmaceutical Policy and Services Management in Primary Health Care in a Brazilian Municipality
Pharmacy 2021, 9(1), 39; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmacy9010039 - 12 Feb 2021
Viewed by 1231
Abstract
The decentralization of the Brazilian health system required that municipalities took responsibility for the local Pharmaceutical Policy and Services (PPS) system. This article presents and analyses an innovative experience of diagnosis of municipal PPS as a sociotechnical system. We adopted a multi-methods approach [...] Read more.
The decentralization of the Brazilian health system required that municipalities took responsibility for the local Pharmaceutical Policy and Services (PPS) system. This article presents and analyses an innovative experience of diagnosis of municipal PPS as a sociotechnical system. We adopted a multi-methods approach and various data sources. Sociotechnical theory was the framework of the methodology of evaluation and design of systems, analyzing the External System (health system, stakeholders, financing) and Internal System (goals, management, workforce, infrastructure, processes, technology and culture). The “objective” component of the PPS system was identified as the central element. The lack of a unified objective and of a central coordination and unmanaged pharmaceutical services prevented integrated internal planning and planning with other sectors. Stakeholders and documents referred only to technical elements of the system: Infrastructure, technical process, and technology. The social components of the workforce and culture were not mentioned. The organizational culture established was the culture of isolation: “Each one does his own”. The pharmacists working in the municipal health system did not know each other. There was no integration strategy between pharmacists and their work processes. Consequently, the municipal PPS had limited scope as a public policy. It had constrained the characteristics of PPS as a complex and open system. Understanding the municipal PPS as a sociotechnical system can push the development of a new level of policy and practice to ensure the population’s right to the access to and rational use of medicines. Full article
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