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How to enhance public health service utilization in community pharmacy?: General public and health providers' perspectives

Saramunee, Kritsanee, Krska, Janet, Mackridge, Adam, Richards, Jacqueline, Suttajit, Siritree and Phillips-Howard, Penelope ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1018-116X (2014) 'How to enhance public health service utilization in community pharmacy?: General public and health providers' perspectives'. Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Vol 10, Issue 2, pp. 272-284.

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Abstract

Background

Community pharmacists (PHs) in England are increasingly providing a range of public health services. However, the general public view pharmacists as drug experts and not experts in health, and therefore, services may be underutilized.

Objectives

To explore experiences and views of 4 groups of participants, the general public, PHs, general practitioners (GPs), and other stakeholders (STs) on pharmacy-based public health services, and identify potential factors affecting service use.

Methods

The study was undertaken in a locality of North West England. Three focus groups were conducted with the general public (n = 16), grouped by socioeconomic status. Fourteen semistructured interviews were undertaken with PHs (n = 9), GPs (n = 2), and STs (n = 3). Discussions/interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed thematically.

Results

All 4 groups of participants agreed that community pharmacies are a good source of advice on medicines and minor ailments but were less supportive of public health services. Six factors were identified affecting utilization of pharmacy services: community pharmacy environment, pharmacist and support staff, service publicity, general public, GP services, and health care system and policies. Crucial obstacles that could inhibit service utilization are perceptions of both the general public and other health providers toward pharmacists' competencies, privacy and confidentiality in pharmacies, high dispensing workload, and inadequate financial support. Networking between local health professionals could enhance confidence in service delivery, general awareness, and thus utilization.

Conclusions

Community pharmacy has the potential to deliver public health services, although the impact on public health may be limited. Addressing the factors identified could help to increase utilization and impact of pharmacy public health services.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: WA Public Health > WA 105 Epidemiology
WA Public Health > Health Administration and Organization > WA 546 Local Health Administration. Community Health Services
WA Public Health > Health Administration and Organization > WA 590 Health education, Health communication
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sapharm.2012.05.006
Depositing User: Lynn Roberts-Maloney
Date Deposited: 24 Apr 2015 09:49
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:09
URI: http://archive.lstmed.ac.uk/id/eprint/5106

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