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A systematic review and thematic synthesis exploring the role of pharmacists in supporting better sleep health and managing sleep disorders

Lookup NU author(s): Fatemah Ashkanani, Dr Laura LindseyORCiD, Dr Adam RathboneORCiD



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


Background: Sleep is an essential part of mental and physical well-being. Sleep disorders may lead to psychiatric and physical conditions that contribute to morbidity and mortality. They lead to severe health and economic consequences across high-, intermediate- and low-income countries. Little is known about how pharmacists manage sleep disorders for patients in high, intermediate and low-income countries. Method: Four databases were systematically searched, and titles, abstracts, and full texts were screened to detect relevant studies. Data were extracted from literature and thematically synthesised to identify descriptive and analytical themes. Results: Thirty-four studies met the inclusion criteria. Most studies were from high-income countries (n = 33) and based in community pharmacy settings (n = 17). Four descriptive themes were identified: (1) how pharmacists manage sleep disorders, (2) the impact of pharmacists’ interventions on sleep, (3) barriers to managing sleep by pharmacists and (4) inappropriate sleep disorders management by pharmacists. Three analytical themes were synthesised from extracted data that identified the pharmacists have roles as (1) de-prescribers, (2) collaborators and (3) educators in sleep management services. Conclusion: Pharmacists have three clear roles in sleep disorder management; deprescribing, collaboration with other healthcare professionals and educators. However, most of the literature is from high-income countries; therefore, further work is needed to explore these roles in low and middle-income countries.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ashkanani F, Lindsey L, Rathbone AP

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: International Journal of Pharmacy Practice

Year: 2023

Pages: Epub ahead of print

Online publication date: 25/02/2023

Acceptance date: 12/12/2022

Date deposited: 27/02/2023

ISSN (print): 0961-7671

ISSN (electronic): 2042-7174

Publisher: Oxford University Press


DOI: 10.1093/ijpp/riac102


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Funder referenceFunder name
Ministry of Health, Kuwait
Newcastle University