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A qualitative study exploring community pharmacists’ awareness of, and contribution to, self-care support in the management of long-term conditions in the United Kingdom.

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Dapo Ogunbayo



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


BackgroundSelf-care support refers to activities aimed at educating, training and empowering patients with skills and ability to manage [and monitor] their long-term conditions (LTCs). While self-care support by health care professionals has emerged as a distinct concept in the management of LTCs, evidence of community pharmacy's contribution is sparse.ObjectiveThe aim was to explore community pharmacy's contribution to self-care support of LTCs. The objectives were to explore how community pharmacists conceptualize self-care support of LTCs and how they operationalize the core elements of this in their practice.MethodsSemi-structured interviews were conducted with community pharmacists in England (n = 12) and Scotland (n = 12). A framework consisting of the core elements of self-care support (information and advice; skills training and support; technology; support networks; and collaborative care planning) was developed from the literature and was used to structure the interviews and analysis. Analysis was done thematically using the interpretative phenomenological analysis technique.ResultsThe three main themes that emerged were conceptualization; operationalization of the core elements; and barriers to providing self-care support. Participants conceptualized self-care of LTCs as patients taking responsibility for their own health, performing activities that improved their LTCs and that enabled them to become more independent in managing their LTCs. Their views on self-care support did not reflect this conceptual understanding but was described primarily as providing patients with information and advice rather than actively supporting them. Participants' views of operationalizing the core elements of self-care support was found to be medicines focused, opportunistic and dependent on the services they provided, rather than being patient-centered and proactive. The barriers to providing self-care support of LTCs in community pharmacy were described as priority accorded to dispensing activities, the structure of the community pharmacy contract, lack of incentives to provide self-care support and patients' expectations and lack of awareness of community pharmacy's role in LTCs management.ConclusionCommunity pharmacists' theoretical understanding of self-care was not reflected in the ways that they portrayed their contributions to self-care support. The current ways in which community pharmacy delivers its services for patient care may need to be re-configured in order to fit into the holistic self-care support paradigm.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ogunbayo OJ, Schafheutle EI, Cutts C, Noyce PR

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy

Year: 2015

Volume: 11

Issue: 6

Pages: 859-879

Print publication date: 01/11/2015

Online publication date: 12/01/2015

Acceptance date: 12/01/2015

Date deposited: 26/05/2016

ISSN (print): 1934-8150

ISSN (electronic): 1551-7411

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.sapharm.2014.12.010


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