Assessment of pharmacists experiences and attitudes toward professionalism and its challenges in pharmacy practice

Document Type: Research article

Authors

1 Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences

2 Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Medical Ethics and HIstory of Medicine Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences

Abstract

Background: Nowadays pharmacists should be involved in patients care and providing pharmaceutical care more than before, but still there is a gap between standard of care and pharmacy practice in pharmacies.
Objective: In this study we aimed at evaluating the pharmacists experiences and attitudes about ethical professional practice in pharmacies.
Setting: The study was conducted in the Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
Method: This study performed as a mixed method study including 12 semi-structured interviews and two focus group discussions (FGDs). All interviews and FGDs were recorded verbatim.
Main outcome measure: The study evaluates the pharmacy practice based on the Code of Ethics for National Pharmaceutical System requirements.
Results: Our study presents the pharmacists ethical challenges in 14 areas of practice such as lack of proper pharmacists-patients and inter and intra-professional relationship; poor management of medication error; lack of pharmacists awareness about their responsibilities, professional rules and regulations; non-OTC drug dispensing without prescription; no collaboration with custodian organizations; dissatisfaction from profession; financial problems; mismanagement in confronting with ads and offers of pharmaceutical companies, and conflict of interest; and uneven drug distribution during shortage.
Conclusion: For providing standard pharmaceutical care modification of infra structures, educational system and regulations in pharmaceutical system is highly recommended.

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