Patient perceptions of pharmacist-managed clinics: a qualitative analysis

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Journal of Pharmacy Technology

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Background: Pharmacist-managed clinics have consistently demonstrated improvement in patient outcomes. Quantitative research offers the benefit of objective outcomes to track progress toward therapeutic goals at pharmacist-managed clinics. While quantitative studies are readily available in the literature, there is a paucity of qualitative studies to capture the patients' perspectives of pharmacy services.

Objective: To assess through the use of qualitative research methods patient perceptions of pharmacist-managed services within ambulatory care clinics that operate under a collaborative practice agreement.

Methods: A semi-structured interview questionnaire was developed, pilot tested, and revised using a focus group of clinical pharmacists. The questionnaire was used to conduct face-to-face patient interviews at 6 pharmacist-managed clinics in central Indiana. English-speaking patients with a minimum of 2 visits with the clinical pharmacist were included in this study. Pharmacist-managed clinics without established collaborative practice agreements were excluded. Patient interviews were conducted by a trained research assistant, audio-recorded, and transcribed verbatim. The interview transcripts were analyzed to identify cross-cutting themes without predetermined definitions via inductive qualitative analysis. Four study investigators independently identified themes using a sample of the transcripts. Additional themes were identified and defined in a series of independent reviews and investigator meetings using the remaining transcripts until theme saturation. All themes were assigned to segments of the interview transcripts according to the consensus definitions.

Results: A total of 30 interviews were conducted across the clinics. Ten themes from the interview transcripts emerged, including disease state management expertise, patient alliance, practice novelty, accessibility, increased sense of patient well-being, and compassion.

Conclusions: Patient perceptions from qualitative interviews revealed that pharmacists are viewed as medication experts who provide patient-centered care. This study highlights unique in-depth perspectives from the patient that further support maintenance and expansion of pharmacist-managed services.


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