Special Issue "Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel"

A special issue of Pharmacy (ISSN 2226-4787).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (16 May 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Shane P. Desselle
Website
Guest Editor
Touro University California College of Pharmacy, Vallejo, CA 94592, USA
Interests: pharmacy workforce; pharmacist roles; pharmacy management; education research
Assoc. Prof. Kenneth C. Hohmeier
Website
Guest Editor
University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, 301 S. Perimeter Park Drive, Nashville, TN 37211, USA
Interests: pharmacy operations; innovation and entrepreneurship; pharmacy workforce; pharmacy management

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Pharmacy workforce support cadres (technicians, pharmaconomists, and others) are increasingly recognized as critical for achieving effective patient care. Initial research suggests that job redesign and systems re-engineering to better leverage the support workforce results in greater operations efficiency and improved patient safety. Pharmacy workforce support personnel are embracing new roles as pharmacists’ practice becomes more patient-centered. Each country worldwide is witness to a different scope of practice, regulatory climate, and required training of its pharmacy support workforce, and there is much to be learned from one another. In some low- and middle-income countries, technicians might be the key link in the medication supply chain. However, there is still much debate about the necessary education for workforce personnel, and the salaries for these individuals are often too low to maintain commitment and equilibrium. This Special Issue of Pharmacy seeks current research related to the pharmacy support workforce, including examples of workflow realignment, shifting roles, quality assurance, and medication safety initiatives, as well as attempts to offer a work environment conducive to their development and self-actualization. For this Special Issue, we also welcome extended commentaries, reviews, and editorials grounded in peer-reviewed literature, as well as statements from professional and/or legislative bodies governing the practice of pharmacy at international, national, or more local/regional levels.

Prof. Shane P. Desselle
Assoc. Prof. Kenneth C. Hohmeier
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Pharmacy is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Pharmacy technician
  • Pharmacy workforce
  • Pharmaconomist
  • Medication safety
  • Pharmacy management

Published Papers (14 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review, Other

Open AccessArticle
Pharmacist—Pharmacy Technician Intraprofessional Collaboration and Workplace Integration: Implications for Educators
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 95; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020095 (registering DOI) - 01 Jun 2020
Abstract
Globally, concerns have been expressed regarding the impact of regulation of pharmacy technicians. After more than a decade of experience with technician regulation in Ontario, Canada, uptake of the full scope of practice for technicians has been sporadic at best. The objective of [...] Read more.
Globally, concerns have been expressed regarding the impact of regulation of pharmacy technicians. After more than a decade of experience with technician regulation in Ontario, Canada, uptake of the full scope of practice for technicians has been sporadic at best. The objective of this study was to examine barriers and facilitators to intraprofessional collaboration between pharmacists and pharmacy technicians for the purpose of identifying possible curricular or educational interventions to enhance workplace integration. A qualitative, interview-based study of 24 pharmacists, technicians, educators, pharmacy managers, and owners was undertaken using a semi-structured interview guide. Key findings of this research include: i) Confirmation of suboptimal utilization of regulated technicians in practice; ii) identification of crucial knowledge and skills gaps for both pharmacists and technicians; and iii) proposals for undergraduate education and training, and continuing professional development learning opportunities to address these gaps. In order to achieve the promise and potential of regulation of pharmacy technicians, system-wide change management―beginning with education―will be required and will benefit from multiple stakeholder engagement and involvement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessArticle
Description of Position Ads for Pharmacy Technicians
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020088 - 22 May 2020
Abstract
Pharmacy technician roles are evolving alongside the changing role of a pharmacist. There is currently no uniform definition of a pharmacy technician’s role in the pharmacy workforce. The objective of this study was to look at the United States-based pharmacy technician advertisement database [...] Read more.
Pharmacy technician roles are evolving alongside the changing role of a pharmacist. There is currently no uniform definition of a pharmacy technician’s role in the pharmacy workforce. The objective of this study was to look at the United States-based pharmacy technician advertisement database from Pharmacy Week to find patterns and commonalities in the duties and qualifications of pharmacy technicians. A retrospective analysis was performed on fourteen days of pharmacy technician job listings from Pharmacy Week from the year 2018. Information obtained from the listings included job title, location, setting, type of job, job duties, and job requirements. Job duties and requirements were coded by themes. Fourteen days of data resulted in 21,007 individual position listings. A majority of the job listings were for full-time positions (96.4%) and most were in the retail setting (96.78%). The most common requirements were registration with State Board, high school diploma, ability to perform tasks, communication, and physical. The most common job duties were general office etiquette, performing tasks under the direct supervision of the pharmacist, and professionalism. This study provides a description of the evolving role of pharmacy technicians through the broad variety in expectations for requirements of pharmacy technician applicants and the duties they perform when hired. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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Open AccessCommunication
Perceived Benefit of Immunization-Trained Technicians in the Pharmacy Workflow
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020071 - 21 Apr 2020
Abstract
Clinical community pharmacists have continually restructured their workflow to serve the community by optimizing patient care outcomes. Defining the perceived benefits of having an immunizing pharmacy technician in the workflow can help to redefine the way community pharmacists operate during patient immunization. The [...] Read more.
Clinical community pharmacists have continually restructured their workflow to serve the community by optimizing patient care outcomes. Defining the perceived benefits of having an immunizing pharmacy technician in the workflow can help to redefine the way community pharmacists operate during patient immunization. The purpose of this study is to share the opinions of supervising pharmacists that have an immunizing technician within their workflow model and highlight their contributions. Pharmacists involved in this novel workflow model were interviewed two times, once in 2017 and then in 2020, to gauge opinions over time. Findings in the results of this study included such themes as: (1) Pharmacists’ perceived improvement in workflow flexibility; (2) The choice of the correct technician to immunize within the pharmacy; (3) Pharmacists’ perceived improved workflow time prioritization; (4) Limited available training as a barrier to implementation; and (5) The initial apprehension and later acceptance of pharmacists with respect to the innovation. As technician immunization administration spreads beyond early adopter states, further research into the impact on pharmacy workflow is needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessArticle
T.E.A.M.S.Work: Leveraging Technicians to Enhance ABM Med Sync in Community Pharmacies
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020051 - 27 Mar 2020
Abstract
The expansion of pharmacy technicians’ roles in community pharmacies allows pharmacists the opportunity to focus on providing clinical services to patients. This study explores the tasks pharmacy technicians’ perform to support Med Sync programs in community pharmacies. Pharmacy staff members at North Carolina [...] Read more.
The expansion of pharmacy technicians’ roles in community pharmacies allows pharmacists the opportunity to focus on providing clinical services to patients. This study explores the tasks pharmacy technicians’ perform to support Med Sync programs in community pharmacies. Pharmacy staff members at North Carolina pharmacies with more than fifty percent of their prescription volume being dispensed as part of a Med Sync program were recruited to participate in semi-structured interviews. Inductive coding and summary analysis were used to analyze the interview data. Study participants described pharmacy technicians’ roles in identifying patients for marketing and enrollment, reviewing patients’ medications list, choosing alignment dates based on patient preference, contacting patients in preparation for dispensing and, lastly, engaging in pickup or delivery of medications. This study highlights technicians’ vital role in completing tasks that support Med Sync programs in community pharmacies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessArticle
Pharmacist Segments Identified from 2009, 2014, and 2019 National Pharmacist Workforce Surveys: Implications for Pharmacy Organizations and Personnel
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020049 - 26 Mar 2020
Abstract
Background/Objective: Findings from the 2009 and 2014 National Pharmacist Workforce Surveys showed that approximately 40% of U.S. pharmacists devoted their time primarily to medication providing, 40% contributed a significant portion of their time to patient care service provision, and the remaining 20% contributed [...] Read more.
Background/Objective: Findings from the 2009 and 2014 National Pharmacist Workforce Surveys showed that approximately 40% of U.S. pharmacists devoted their time primarily to medication providing, 40% contributed a significant portion of their time to patient care service provision, and the remaining 20% contributed most of their time to other health-system improvement activities. The objective of this study was to characterize the U.S. pharmacist workforce into segments based on the proportion of time they spend in medication providing and patient care services and compare changes in these segments between 2009, 2014, and 2019. Methods: Data from 2009, 2014, and 2019 National Pharmacist Workforce Surveys were analyzed. Responses from 1200 pharmacists in 2009, 1382 in 2014, and 4766 in 2019 were used for analysis. Respondents working in the pharmacy or pharmacy-related fields reported both their percent time devoted to medication providing and to patient care services. Medication providing included preparing, distributing, and administering medication products, including associated professional services. Patient care services were professional services designed for assessing and evaluating medication-related needs, monitoring and adjusting patient’s treatments, and other services designed for patient care. For each year of data, pharmacist segments were identified using a two-step cluster analysis. Descriptive statistics were used for describing the characteristics of the segments. Results: For each year, five segments of pharmacists were identified. The proportions of pharmacists in each segment for the three surveys (2009, 2014, 2019) were: (1) medication providers (41%, 40%, 34%), (2) medication providers who also provide patient care (25%, 22%, 25%), (3) other activity pharmacists (16%, 18%, 14%), (4) patient care providers who also provide medication (12%, 13%, 15%), and (5) patient care providers (6%, 7%, 12%). In 2019, other activity pharmacists worked over 45 hours per week, on average, with 12 of these hours worked remotely. Patient care providers worked 41 hours per week, on average, with six of these hours worked remotely. Medication providers worked less than 40 hours per week, on average, with just one of these hours worked remotely. Regarding the number of patients with whom a respondent interacted on a typical day, medication providers reported 18 per day, patient care providers reported 11 per day, and other activity pharmacists reported 6 per day. In 2009, 8% of patient care providers worked in a setting that was not licensed as a pharmacy. In 2019, this grew to 17%. Implications/Conclusions: The 2019 findings showed that 34% of U.S. pharmacists devoted their time primarily to medication providing (compared to 40% in 2009 and 2014), 52% contributed a significant portion of their time to patient care service provision (compared to 40% in 2009 and 2014), and the remaining 14% contributed most of their time to other health-system improvement activities. Distinguishing characteristics of the segments suggested that recent growth in the pharmacist workforce has been in the patient care services, with more being provided through remote means in organizations that are not licensed as pharmacies. The findings have implications for pharmacist training, continuing education, labor monitoring, regulations, work systems, and process designs. These changes will create new roles and tasks for pharmacy organizations and personnel that will be needed to support emerging patient care services provided by pharmacists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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Open AccessArticle
Pharmacy Technicians’ Contribution to Counselling at Community Pharmacies in Denmark
Pharmacy 2020, 8(1), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8010048 - 23 Mar 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
(1) Background: pharmacy technicians are the largest group of staff at Danish community pharmacies and play a vital role in counselling customers on prescription medication, over-the-counter (OTC) medication and non-medical products. This is the first study carried out to specifically analyse how they [...] Read more.
(1) Background: pharmacy technicians are the largest group of staff at Danish community pharmacies and play a vital role in counselling customers on prescription medication, over-the-counter (OTC) medication and non-medical products. This is the first study carried out to specifically analyse how they contribute to counselling and identification of drug-related problems (DRPs) at Danish community pharmacies. (2) Methods: seventy-six pharmacy technicians from 38 community pharmacies registered data on all of their customer visits for five days, over a four-week period, between January and March 2019. Data were analysed in SPSS version 24. (3) Results: 58.9% of all registered customers (n = 10,417) received counselling. They identified DRPs for 15.8% of all registered customers (n = 2800). Counselling by pharmacy technicians solved, or partially solved, problems for 70.4% of customers with DRPs. Pharmacy technicians estimated that 25.2% of customers receiving counselling (n = 2621) were saved a visit to the general practitioner (GP). (4) Conclusions: as community pharmacists get more involved in complex services, it would be necessary to expand the roles of pharmacy technicians. Pharmacy technicians contribute to medication safety via counselling, and identifying and handling DRPs for all customers. This study documents the role of pharmacy technicians in customer counselling at Danish community pharmacies. It provides evidence to researchers and policy makers to support discussions on the future role of pharmacy technicians at community pharmacies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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Open AccessArticle
Wage Premiums as a Means to Evaluate the Labor Market for Pharmacy Technicians in the United States: 1997–2018
Pharmacy 2020, 8(1), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8010042 - 17 Mar 2020
Abstract
Pharmacy technicians are integral members of the health care team, assisting pharmacists and other health professionals in assuring safe and effective medication use. To date, evaluation of the labor market for pharmacy technicians has been limited, and relatively little has been evaluated regarding [...] Read more.
Pharmacy technicians are integral members of the health care team, assisting pharmacists and other health professionals in assuring safe and effective medication use. To date, evaluation of the labor market for pharmacy technicians has been limited, and relatively little has been evaluated regarding trends in wages. The objective of this research is to use US Bureau of Labor Statistics (US BLS) data to evaluate changes in pharmacy technician wages in the United States from 1997 to 2018 relative to changes in the US consumer price index (CPI). Median hourly wages for pharmacy technicians were collected from US BLS data from 1997 to 2018. Median hourly wages were compared to expected hourly wages, with the difference, a wage premium, indicative of imbalances in the supply and demand of labor. Both positive and negative wage premiums were observed, with most positive wage premiums occurring prior to 2007 and most negative wage premiums observed after 2008. Differences in wage premiums were also observed between technicians working in various practice settings. Given the median length of employment of pharmacy technicians, it is likely that the majority of technicians working in US pharmacies have not experienced increases in their wages relative to what would be expected by changes in the CPI. This has occurred at a time when pharmacies and pharmacists are asking more of their pharmacy technicians. Researchers and pharmacy managers must continue to evaluate the pharmacy technician labor market to assure that technician wage and compensation levels attract an adequate supply of sufficiently skilled workers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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Open AccessArticle
Exploring Pharmacy Technician Roles in the Implementation of an Appointment-Based Medication Synchronization Program
Pharmacy 2020, 8(1), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8010028 - 03 Mar 2020
Abstract
The objective of this study was to qualitatively explore the role of pharmacy technicians in the implementation of an appointment-based model (ABM) medication synchronization program. The purposeful sampling of technicians working within six different locations of a supermarket chain pharmacy in Mississippi and [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to qualitatively explore the role of pharmacy technicians in the implementation of an appointment-based model (ABM) medication synchronization program. The purposeful sampling of technicians working within six different locations of a supermarket chain pharmacy in Mississippi and Tennessee was carried out, and the technicians were interviewed between January and April 2018. A semi-structured interview guide was developed based on the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR). Questions gathered information around pharmacy technician demographics and CFIR domains (process, inner setting, outer setting and intervention characteristics). Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed. Two members of the research team performed thematic content analysis. Six full-time, certified pharmacy technicians with 8.3 ± 2.7 years of experience were interviewed. Findings suggest that including hands-on experience with program software is needed during training to successfully implement ABM. A barrier to implementation was the time needed to complete ABM tasks as compared to other tasks. Although some barriers exist regarding implementation, technicians believe that overall, this program has positive benefits for patients. Results from this study signify that ABM implementation can be challenging. Better ABM portal integration with the pharmacy patient profile and appropriate workforce budgeting are key to continued success. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessArticle
Moving the Needle: A 50-State and District of Columbia Landscape Review of Laws Regarding Pharmacy Technician Vaccine Administration
Pharmacy 2019, 7(4), 168; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7040168 - 10 Dec 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Pharmacy technicians are essential for inner workings of pharmacy teams and their depth of involvement in roles continues to evolve. An innovative role for pharmacy technicians, administration of vaccines, has emerged. With Idaho, Rhode Island, and Utah recently implementing changes that allow pharmacy [...] Read more.
Pharmacy technicians are essential for inner workings of pharmacy teams and their depth of involvement in roles continues to evolve. An innovative role for pharmacy technicians, administration of vaccines, has emerged. With Idaho, Rhode Island, and Utah recently implementing changes that allow pharmacy technicians to safely perform this role, the need arose for a detailed examination of the law climate in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. A nine-question survey was sent out to all 51 state boards of pharmacy inquiring to legislative and regulatory environment of pharmacy technician vaccine administration. Additionally, a protocol driven, peer-reviewed process of state-specific regulations and statutes revealed categorized trends pertaining to this topic. Each state was classified per protocol into four different categories. The categorization resulted in identification of nine states in which pharmacy technician administered vaccination may be considered “Not Expressly Prohibited”. A majority of states were categorized as prohibited (either directly or indirectly). Board of pharmacy respondents (43%) reported varying viewpoints on technician administered vaccines. While three states (Idaho, Rhode Island, Utah) have already made changes to allow for pharmacy technician administered vaccinations, opportunities exist for other states to consider changes to statutes or rules. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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Open AccessArticle
The Value and Potential Integration of Pharmacy Technician National Certification into Processes That Help Assure a Competent Workforce
Pharmacy 2019, 7(4), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7040147 - 05 Nov 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The purposes of this study were: (1) to determine pharmacists’ perceptions of the impact of certification on competence in specific job skills, its impact in combination with job experience, and its impact in combination with other types of vocational education/training; (2) to identify [...] Read more.
The purposes of this study were: (1) to determine pharmacists’ perceptions of the impact of certification on competence in specific job skills, its impact in combination with job experience, and its impact in combination with other types of vocational education/training; (2) to identify elements that could potentially enhance the value, or impact of national certification; and (3) to determine how pharmacists view certification in light of various personnel management and organizational behavior phenomena. A self-administered survey was constructed and delivered in spring of 2019 to a random sample of four U.S. states chosen for their geographic diversity and relatively high proportions of both certified and non-certified pharmacy technicians. Following multiple reminders, a response rate of 19.3% was obtained. The 326 responding pharmacists saw certification being less impactful alone than when combined with other types of education/training and previous job experiences. They saw the need for more skills-related and “soft skills” content on the certification examination and agreed that certification is a factor in hiring decisions and that it should be required for designation for advanced practice status. Taken together, respondents saw the need for pharmacy leaders to integrate certification with other aspects of preparation to make for a more competent and professional workforce support team. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)

Review

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Open AccessReview
Impact of Up-Scheduling Medicines on Pharmacy Personnel, Using Codeine as an Example, with Possible Adaption to Complementary Medicines: A Scoping Review
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020065 - 15 Apr 2020
Abstract
Within Australia, vitamins, minerals, nutritional supplements, essential oils, and homoeopathic and herbal preparations are collectively termed and regulated as Complementary Medicines (CMs) by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). CMs are predominantly self-selected through a pharmacy, providing pharmacy personnel an opportunity to engage [...] Read more.
Within Australia, vitamins, minerals, nutritional supplements, essential oils, and homoeopathic and herbal preparations are collectively termed and regulated as Complementary Medicines (CMs) by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). CMs are predominantly self-selected through a pharmacy, providing pharmacy personnel an opportunity to engage with the public about their CM use. CMs are currently non-scheduled products in Australia. This review aimed to summarize the literature reporting the potential effect on pharmacies if scheduling of CMs was adopted, using codeine as an example. A scoping review methodology was employed. Seven databases were searched to identify four key concepts, including: CMs, scheduling and rescheduling, codeine, and pharmacists. Seven studies were included for analysis. The majority of the literature has explored qualitative studies on the perception and opinion of pharmacists in relation to the up-scheduling of codeine. The case of codeine illustrates the possible impact of up-scheduling. If CMs were to be up-scheduled, the accessibility of CMs would be limited to the pharmacy providing a role for pharmacy personnel, including both pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, to counsel on CM use. However, careful collaboration and consideration on how such a regulatory change would impact other key-stakeholders, including CM practitioners, requires both a strategic and collaborative approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)

Other

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Open AccessOpinion
Embracing the Evolution of Pharmacy Practice by Empowering Pharmacy Technicians
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020066 - 15 Apr 2020
Abstract
While pharmacy technician roles in some practice settings are expanding beyond the traditional dispensing activities to include advanced or specialized tasks such as immunization administration, medication history collection, and final product verification, these practices are not yet widespread. There are apparent barriers to [...] Read more.
While pharmacy technician roles in some practice settings are expanding beyond the traditional dispensing activities to include advanced or specialized tasks such as immunization administration, medication history collection, and final product verification, these practices are not yet widespread. There are apparent barriers to expanding the role of pharmacy technicians, including inconsistency in the education, training, and certification requirements across the United States, and regulations that have not kept pace with the evolving role of pharmacy technicians. Every corner of the profession has an opportunity, and responsibility, to elevate pharmacy technicians in an effort to advance safety and better serve patients. Regulators can expand the responsibilities that may be delegated to technicians, professional organizations can bring pharmacy technicians into the fold, employers can build career ladders to allow for advancement, and individual pharmacists and pharmacy technicians can advocate and engage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessCommentary
Using Real-Life Data to Strengthen the Education of Pharmacy Technician Students: From Student to Research Assistant
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020062 - 08 Apr 2020
Abstract
This commentary is based on the experience of teaching and observations of how pharmacy technician students can expand their perspective on patient safety by using real-life student-gathered patient data collected from community pharmacies. Pharmacy technicians in Denmark work extensively with counselling on the [...] Read more.
This commentary is based on the experience of teaching and observations of how pharmacy technician students can expand their perspective on patient safety by using real-life student-gathered patient data collected from community pharmacies. Pharmacy technicians in Denmark work extensively with counselling on the safe and efficient use of medications. Final-year pharmacy technician students can take the elective course in Clinical Pharmacy in Community Pharmacy, which targets the students who wish to work in depth with patient communication and quality assurance in counselling. One assignment that forms part of the course is for students to collect data about patients’ beliefs about medications. Teachers’ observations suggest that when students gather and work with their own data, they change their perspective on patients’ beliefs about medications. It also strengthens the students’ awareness of their responsibility for ensuring patient safety and contributes valid data to research in pharmacy practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
Open AccessCommentary
Practice, Skill Mix, and Education: The Evolving Role of Pharmacy Technicians in Great Britain
Pharmacy 2020, 8(2), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8020050 - 26 Mar 2020
Abstract
Pharmacy technicians’ roles are rapidly evolving in Great Britain (GB) as they undertake more extended activities with increased autonomy across the different pharmacy sectors. This paper compares the GB pharmacy regulator initial education and training standards recently introduced (2017) with the qualifications currently [...] Read more.
Pharmacy technicians’ roles are rapidly evolving in Great Britain (GB) as they undertake more extended activities with increased autonomy across the different pharmacy sectors. This paper compares the GB pharmacy regulator initial education and training standards recently introduced (2017) with the qualifications currently used in practice and discusses whether future qualifications will be ‘fit for purpose’. In this context, knowledge, skills, and competence are reviewed to assess whether they will meet the expectations and underpin the evolving pharmacy technician role as integral to healthcare provision. Based on drivers, policy change, and the changing GB healthcare landscape, effectiveness of skill mix is analysed to establish whether this is being optimised to support person-centred pharmacy in response to the challenges and pressures faced within the NHS. On this basis and given there is a limited evidence base, this review has highlighted a need for larger scale research to reassure the pharmacy and wider healthcare professions, and the public, that the evolving pharmacy technician role presents no increased risk to patient safety and contributes significantly to releasing pharmacists time for person-centred clinical activities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pharmacy Workforce Support Personnel)
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