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Value of pharmacy services to the healthcare system: an interdisciplinary assessment

Authors


Correspondence

Dr Danielle L. Cruthirds, Department of Pharmaceutical, Social and Administrative Sciences, McWhorter School of Pharmacy, Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35229, USA.

E-mail: dcruthir@samford.edu

Abstract

Objectives

The purpose of this project was to determine how pharmacists and physicians view the extending role of the hospital pharmacist in Tennessee, USA.

Methods

An 18-question survey was sent via e-mail to five selected hospitals in Tennessee. The survey was comprised of questions related to the interaction of the pharmacist with other healthcare professionals and their role in the healthcare team.

Key findings

This survey achieved a 40.1% response rate. Ninety-one per cent of physicians and pharmacists in the sample are receptive to an extended role of the pharmacist and agree that pharmacists provide a benefit to patients and to the healthcare system. A minority of respondents, including pharmacists, do not consider the pharmacist a member of the healthcare team and suggest that barriers in the transition away from the traditional pharmacy role are time, staffing and reimbursement/funding.

Conclusions

Results from this survey reveal that the majority of physicians and pharmacists in non-academic settings embrace an extended role of the pharmacist as part of the healthcare team and have an overall good perception of contemporary pharmacy practice. Clinical pharmacies are in place worldwide, making this topic applicable in many settings.

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