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Foundation pharmacists in GP Practice: exploring experiences of future workforce development

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Wasim Baqir, Dr Adam RathboneORCiD


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IntroductionHealthcare professionals from different disciplines are increasingly being brought together todeliver patient services 1, 2. This is represented by the gradual inclusion of clinical pharmacyinto general practice 3. Such initiatives may result in secondary care organisations losing anumber of experienced clinical pharmacists, potentially impacting on patient care. Little isknown about the roles and responsibilities of newly qualified pharmacists (FPs) in generalpractice organisations. A three-year structured programme was designed and implementedthat exposed FPs to clinical practice across primary and secondary care settings.Objective(s)This aim of this study was to explore key stakeholders’ experiences of the programme. MethodSix general practices were identified. Two FPs were allocated to each practice to spendalternative four-week rotations in primary and secondary care. Each FP had a GP andsenior pharmacist mentor to support them. Practices co-fund the role with tiered fundingfrom the Vanguard project (60% and 40% in years 1 and 2, respectively). Eighteenqualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted after 3 months with FPs, GPs, nursepractitioners, administrative assistants, hospital pharmacy technicians, senior clinicalpharmacists, and community pharmacists. Interview data was analysed thematically by handand using NVivo to support data management.ResultsData analysis identified that FPs were able to i) perform a range of tasks including dischargereconciliation, prescription requests and medication review clinics to directly improve patientcare, ii) act as a point of contact and reference resource for professionals in primary,intermediary and secondary care settings, including community pharmacists, to supportpharmaceutical care, and iii) release GP time. Analysis also identified that difficulties in theprogramme were due to iv) inappropriate type and quantity of work and that v) further clarityand structure is needed as to how GP mentor may support FPs. Discussion/ConclusionThis work demonstrates that FPs are able to practice across care settings competently,supporting direct and indirect patient care to release GP time. The study identifieddifferences in the expectations of stakeholders between the type and quantity of work forFPs. This may be due to differences in perspective 4. Further qualitative and quantitativefollow-up is planned for 6, 9, 12, 18, 24, 36 months.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Baqir W, Rathbone AP, Stocker A, Campbell D

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Clinical Pharmacy Congress 2017

Year of Conference: 2017

Acceptance date: 20/03/2017