Special Issue "The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Reem Kayyali
Website
Guest Editor
School of Pharmacy and Chemistry, Kingston University
Interests: public health; medicines optimisation; patient care; mobile health; pharmacy services; patient education; telehealth; patient experience; healthcare education
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is a known fact that community pharmacists are one of the most frequently visited healthcare professionals, and that community pharmacies are the first port of call for the general public. Pharmacy has undergone remarkable changes, and community pharmacists have made an effort to expand their traditional role of dispensing medication by providing more patient-oriented and public health-related interventions. Community pharmacy now offer a range of services in relation to health promotion and disease prevention, such as smoking cessation, weight management, and vaccinations. They also offer services for health improvement which focus on medication adherence and optimising medicines use for long-term conditions, and play a role in disease screening and early detection. Recently, technological advances may have further changed the traditional model of service delivery and have potentially expanded the reach of community pharmacy through the use of virtual consultations.

We invite you to share your experiences, evaluations, innovations, or any service evaluation or research you have undertaken in relation to the role of community pharmacists in all dimensions of public health from disease prevention and early screening to health improvement. We hope this Special Issue will inspire pharmacists and researchers to share their own practices and adopt new approaches and innovate to make improvements in public health provision.

Prof. Dr. Reem Kayyali
Guest Editor

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 1400 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

  • public health
  • health promotion
  • health protection
  • community pharmacy
  • community pharmacists
  • patients’ perceptions
  • public perceptions
  • pharmacy services
  • digital health
  • well-being
  • screening
  • health improvement
  • cost-effectiveness
  • evidence
  • disease prevention
  • adherence
  • medicines optimisation
  • medicines

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
The impact of a Post-Take Ward Round Pharmacist on the Risk Score and Enactment of Medication-Related Recommendations
Pharmacy 2020, 8(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8010023 - 20 Feb 2020
Viewed by 665
Abstract
There is a scarcity of published research describing the impact of a pharmacist on the post-take ward round (PTWR) in addition to ward-based pharmacy services. The aim of this paper was to evaluate the impact of clinical pharmacists’ participation on the PTWR on [...] Read more.
There is a scarcity of published research describing the impact of a pharmacist on the post-take ward round (PTWR) in addition to ward-based pharmacy services. The aim of this paper was to evaluate the impact of clinical pharmacists’ participation on the PTWR on the risk assessment scores of medication-related recommendations with and without a pharmacist. This includes medication-related recommendations occurring on the PTWR and those recommendations made by the ward-based pharmacist on the inpatient ward. A pre–post intervention study was undertaken that compared the impact of adding a pharmacist to the PTWR compared with ward-based pharmacist services alone. A panel reviewed the risk of not acting on medication recommendations that was made on the PTWR and those recorded by the ward-based pharmacist. The relationship between the risk scores and the number and proportion of recommendations that led to action were compared between study groups. There were more medication-related recommendations on the PTWR in the intervention group when a pharmacist was present. Proportionately fewer were in the ’very high and extreme’ risk category. Although there was no difference in the number of ward pharmacist recommendations between groups, there was a significantly higher proportion of ward pharmacist recommendations in the “very high and extreme” category in those patients who had been seen on a PTWR attended by a pharmacist than when a pharmacist was not present. There were a greater proportion of “low and medium” risk actionable medication recommendations actioned on the PTWR in the intervention group; and no difference in the risk scores in ward pharmacist recommendations actioned between groups. Overall, the proportion of recommendations that were actioned was higher for those made on the PTWR compared with the ward. The addition of a pharmacist to the PTWR resulted in an increase in low, medium, and high risk recommendations on the PTWR, more very high and extreme risk recommendations made by the ward-based pharmacist, plus an increased number of recommendations being actioned during the patients’ admission. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
Open AccessArticle
Influence of Sales Promotion Techniques on Consumers’ Purchasing Decisions at Community Pharmacies
Pharmacy 2019, 7(4), 150; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7040150 - 08 Nov 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1403
Abstract
This research aims to identify the most prevalent and impactful sales promotion tools used by pharmaceutical companies on consumers’ purchasing decisions at community pharmacies. A cross-sectional study design was carried out using the non-repeated random sampling technique. Standardized questionnaires were administered by means [...] Read more.
This research aims to identify the most prevalent and impactful sales promotion tools used by pharmaceutical companies on consumers’ purchasing decisions at community pharmacies. A cross-sectional study design was carried out using the non-repeated random sampling technique. Standardized questionnaires were administered by means of face-to-face interviews or via emails. The relative importance of prevalence (RIP) and the mean evaluation of effectiveness (MEE) were determined for all studied marketing tools for the different groups of respondents (pharmaceutical sales representatives (PSRs), community pharmacists, consumers, and the entire sample). Inter-individual differences in RIP and MEE were assessed by computing the coefficient of variation, whereas inter-group differences were determined by one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) with the Scheffé test as a post-hoc test. Research findings showed that, according to all respondents, the consumer promotion technique had the strongest impact on consumers’ purchasing decisions while merchandising was the most common sales promotion technique at community pharmacies. PSRs and pharmacists identified trade promotion as the most effective and prevalent technique. Furthermore, research findings showed that, according to all respondents, the following sales promotion tools had the strongest impact on consumers’ purchasing decisions: arrangement and design of showcases among the studied tools for merchandising; buy 1 and get 2 among the studied tools for consumer promotion; and gifts among the trade promotion studied tools. The same tools were identified as the most prevalent by all respondents. Free samples of promoted products appeared to be the most prevalent tool, but at the same time was the least effective. In conclusion, the results of the present research enable an understanding of which sales promotion tools are commonly used at community pharmacies and which ones have the strongest impact on consumers’ purchasing decisions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
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Open AccessArticle
Pharmacist Outlooks on Prescribing Hormonal Contraception Following Statewide Scope of Practice Expansion
Pharmacy 2019, 7(3), 96; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7030096 - 18 Jul 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1079
Abstract
In an effort to increase access to contraception, the pharmacist scope of practice is being expanded to allow prescribing. While this is being accomplished in the United States by a variety of models, legislation that allows pharmacists to prescribe hormonal contraception under a [...] Read more.
In an effort to increase access to contraception, the pharmacist scope of practice is being expanded to allow prescribing. While this is being accomplished in the United States by a variety of models, legislation that allows pharmacists to prescribe hormonal contraception under a statewide protocol is the most common. This study was designed to explore the outlooks of pharmacists regarding prescribing contraception in the period following the first state legislation and prior to statewide protocol development and availability. A qualitative study of community pharmacists in California using structured phone interviews explored their opinions regarding access to contraception in pharmacies and outlooks regarding prescribing. Data were analyzed using an inductive approach to identify themes. Among the thirty participants, the majority worked in a chain pharmacy. Themes were identified in five overarching domains: Pharmacist barriers, system barriers, patient issues, safety concerns, and pharmacist role. Most were unfamiliar with the new law, yet were interested in expanding access for patient benefit despite foreseeing challenges with implementing the service in community pharmacies. Barriers will need to be addressed and requisite training disseminated widely to facilitate successful implementation and thus improve access on a broad scale. Further research following protocol implementation is needed to understand service implementation, as well as patient utilization and satisfaction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
Open AccessArticle
Experiences of the Pharmacy-Led Weight Management Service: Views of Service Providers in England
Pharmacy 2019, 7(3), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7030082 - 03 Jul 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 988
Abstract
Obesity constitutes one of the main modifiable risks of developing cardiovascular disease. In the UK, in 2016, 30% of the adult population were obese (30% of females and 29% of males). Community pharmacies are ideally situated to offer weight management (WM) services, enabling [...] Read more.
Obesity constitutes one of the main modifiable risks of developing cardiovascular disease. In the UK, in 2016, 30% of the adult population were obese (30% of females and 29% of males). Community pharmacies are ideally situated to offer weight management (WM) services, enabling individuals to control and lose their excess weight. This study aimed at exploring the views of the pharmacy-led WM service providers in England. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 trained community pharmacists and pharmacy staff—11 (73.3%) from Kent, three (20%) from Kingston and Richmond and one (6.7%) from Hackney and City—offering the WM service, either owning or working in independent pharmacies or for pharmacy chains. All interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and anonymised. The analysis was conducted using thematic analysis. Three themes emerged: training and support, barriers and approach. Interestingly, service providers (SP) stated that obesity is a tough topic to talk about: they found it difficult to start a conversation about it, even if they had received training to facilitate this role. Additionally, several barriers for running such a service were identified, such as lack of time, too much work pressure and too little advertising, which could potentially lead to poor sustainability of the service. SPs can effectively intervene in an individual’s weight through the WM service that they offer. It is clear that further training should be provided in order for SPs to feel more comfortable in approaching and communicating with people and to increase the public’s awareness of the pharmacy-led WM service, so as to ensure the service’s sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
Open AccessCommunication
Emergency Contraception Counseling in California Community Pharmacies: A Mystery Caller Study
Pharmacy 2019, 7(2), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy7020038 - 23 Apr 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1242
Abstract
This study was conducted to determine which emergency contraception (EC) methods are offered by community pharmacists in response to patient calls. Female mystery callers called all community pharmacies in two California cities using standardized scripts. The callers inquired about options available to prevent [...] Read more.
This study was conducted to determine which emergency contraception (EC) methods are offered by community pharmacists in response to patient calls. Female mystery callers called all community pharmacies in two California cities using standardized scripts. The callers inquired about options available to prevent pregnancy after sex and whether that method was available at the pharmacy, using follow-up probes if necessary. A total of 239 calls were completed in San Diego (n = 127, 53%) and San Francisco (n = 112, 47%). Pharmacists indicated availability at most sites (n = 220, 92%) with option(s) reported as levonorgestrel only (LNG; n = 211, 88.3%), both ulipristal acetate (UPA) and LNG (n = 4, 1.6%), UPA only (n = 1, 0.4%), or non-specific EC (n = 4, 1.7%). Nineteen pharmacies (7.9%) did not have EC available on the day of the call. Following additional probing, some pharmacists discussed UPA (n = 49, 20.5%) or the copper intrauterine device (n = 1, 0.4%) as EC options. LNG EC products were available same-day in 90.1% of pharmacies, whereas UPA was available same-day in 9.6% of pharmacies. The majority of pharmacies called in this study offered and stocked at least one EC option, but the focus of discussions was on LNG and matched what was in stock and available. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials of Telehealth and Digital Technology Use by Community Pharmacists to Improve Public Health
Pharmacy 2020, 8(3), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmacy8030137 - 04 Aug 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1200
Abstract
Community pharmacists (CPs) continue to have an important role in improving public health, however, advances in telehealth and digital technology mean that the methods by which they support their customers and patients are changing. The primary aim of this study was to identify [...] Read more.
Community pharmacists (CPs) continue to have an important role in improving public health, however, advances in telehealth and digital technology mean that the methods by which they support their customers and patients are changing. The primary aim of this study was to identify which telehealth and digital technology tools are used by CPs for public health purposes and determine if these have a positive impact on public health outcomes. A systematic review was carried out using databases including PubMed and ScienceDirect, covering a time period from April 2005 until April 2020. The search criteria were the following: randomized controlled trials, published in English, investigating the delivery of public health services by community pharmacists using a telehealth or digital tool. Thirteen studies were included out of 719 initially identified. Nine studies detailed the use of telephone prompts or calls, one study detailed the use of a mobile health application, two studies detailed the use of a remote monitoring device, and one study detailed the use of photo-aging software. Public health topics that were addressed included vaccination uptake (n = 2), smoking cessation (n = 1), hypertension management (n = 2), and medication adherence and counseling (n = 8). More studies are needed to demonstrate whether or not the use of novel technology by CPs can improve public health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Community Pharmacists in Public Health)
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