Objectives Safe pharmaceutical care (PC) requires an interprofessional team approach, involving physicians, nurses and pharmacists. Nurses’ roles however, are not always explicit and clear, complicating interprofessional collaboration. The aim of this study is to describe nurses’ practice and interprofessional collaboration in PC, from the viewpoint of nurses, physicians and pharmacists.
Design A cross-sectional survey.
Setting The study was conducted in 17 European countries, each with their own health systems.
Participants Pharmacists, physicians and nurses with an active role in PC were surveyed.
Main outcome measures Nurses’ involvement in PC, experiences of interprofessional collaboration and communication and views on nurses’ competences.
Results A total of 4888 nurses, 974 physicians and 857 pharmacists from 17 European countries responded. Providing patient education and information (PEI), monitoring medicines adherence (MMA), monitoring adverse/therapeutic effects (ME) and prescribing medicines were considered integral to nursing practice by 78%, 73%, 69% and 15% of nurses, respectively. Most respondents were convinced that quality of PC would be improved by increasing nurses’ involvement in ME (95%), MMA (95%), PEI (91%) and prescribing (53%). Mean scores for the reported quality of collaboration between nurses and physicians, collaboration between nurses and pharmacists and interprofessional communication were respectively <7/10, ≤4/10, <6/10 for all four aspects of PC.
Conclusions ME, MMA, PEI and prescribing are part of nurses’ activities, and most healthcare professionals felt their involvement should be extended. Collaboration between nurses and physicians on PC is limited and between nurses and pharmacists even more.
- international health services
- health services administration & management
- quality in healthcare
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Contributors EDB, BVR, NED, CS, TD contributed to the design of the study. EDB, BVR, LMB, MB, BC-P, ADS, NED, MIF, IF, VAG, JH, AKH, MI, SJ, IK, SK, PK, GL, ML-C, VL, AM, GM, AO, HP, MP, DP, CS, ST, EZ, TD contributed to the data collection. EDB conducted the data analysis. All authors contributed to the interpretation of the data, and the preparation and refinement of the final manuscript.
Funding This work was supported by the Erasmus+Programme of the European Union (grant number 2018-1-BE02-KA203-046861) and MDMJ accountants, an accountancy service in Belgium that financially supported the Belgian authors, without any conflicts of interest.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were not involved in the design, conduct, reporting or dissemination plans of this research.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Ethics approval The Ethics Committee for Social Sciences and Humanities of the University of Antwerp approved the study design. Depending on local regulations, in some countries additional approval from local organisations: Health Research Authority approval and Bournemouth University approval (England), Ethical Committee of School of Human Movement and Quality of Life of University of Peloponnese (Greece), Health Science Council—Scientific and Research Ethics Committee (Hungary), Bioethics Commission at the Medical University of Warsaw (Poland), Ethics Committee of the Nursing Sciences Research Unit of the Nursing School of Coimbra (Portugal), Integrated Research Application System ethical approval and Research & Development departments (Wales).
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data availability statement Data are available on reasonable request. All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information.
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