The public's perception of the role of community pharmacists in Wales
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Objective To investigate the general public's perceptions of the community pharmacist's (CP) role in Wales by exploring understanding, awareness of services provided and potential interventions for promoting the role of CPs. Methods Qualitative methodology using focus group (FG) discussions exploring opinions, facilitated by a moderator (pharmacist) and an assistant. Topics discussed included the following: what a CP does; reasons for visiting; from whom they seek advice on medicines or lifestyle issues; use of traditional and newer services and promotion of services. The groups, totalling 32 participants, represented non‐users and users of pharmacy services, that is pupils from a local secondary school (x1 group), people from the local community (x3) and patients plus carers from a Parkinson's disease group (x1). FG discussions were recorded and transcribed verbatim, and analysis was undertaken to identify themes. Key findings Traditional dispensing and supply of medicines roles were clearly recognised, but poor awareness of the newer services emerged, particularly in public health roles. CP's professionalism was acknowledged, but there was confusion over where they ‘fit’ within the National Health Service or with General Practitioners, with concerns or misconceptions raised over the impact of commercialism on professionalism. Conclusions Based on these findings, the public is accepting of the extended role of CPs and would engage with CPs for a wider range of services. However, there is a lack of awareness of what public health services are available. Considerable work is needed to increase public awareness, during the strategic development of these services in Wales.
International Journal of Pharmacy Practice;
Kember, J., Hodson, K. and James, D.H. (2017) 'The public's perception of the role of community pharmacists in Wales', International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, 26(2), pp.120-128
Article published in International Journal of Pharmacy Practice available at https://doi.org/10.1111/ijpp.12375
Cardiff Metropolitan University (Grant ID: Cardiff Metropolian (Internal))
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