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Australian Journal of Pharmacy : November 2006
ducation The results of the research have informed the development of the model. The overarching framework is one that focuses on quality improvement over time with consumers and pharmacists being the key participants. The fundamental underpinnings of the model are: • Participation in healthcare policy and practice improvement is an extension of the Australians’ democratic rights to express their views. • Practical support for participation will be built into all strate- gies for consumer participation. • Participation will be timely, so that consumer views can influ- ence both final and ongoing decisions. • Efforts will be made to engage with consumers who have bar- riers to their participation. • Consumer participation can make a positive difference to the effectiveness, efficiency and value of community pharmacy . The framework’s principles include defining participation as partnership, the need for organisational and cultural change, aligning of strategies with capacity to implement, support of peak professional bodies, and a ground-up development approach. Eight recommendations were based on the findings of this report and related to medicines information, raising expectations of community pharmacy professional services, privacy, medi- cines supply, a way forward and monitoring consumer experi- ences of community pharmacy. The researchdemonstrated limited consumer awareness of the professional standards pharmacists are required to adhere to, and the full range of professional services available through com- munity pharmacy. Where to from here? Consumer needs can be classified into three categories. First are normative needs which are defined by experts and determined by investigation. Second are needs that are ‘felt’ by consumers. Finally there are expressed needs or demands. In expressing their Consumer understanding of what they should expect from pharmacy services Consumer previous experiences Normative needs Consumer needs Expressed needs Felt needs Consumer experiences consumer satisfaction with Consumer expectations AJPCPE CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION needs, consumers may base their opinion only on the services that they are aware of, and not on the full range of services that may be available. The research findings have provided a rich source of infor- mation about the consumer perspective. Consumers’ experiences of community pharmacy have generally been positive. However, some groups of consumers, notably those with significant health needs, find their experiences less satisfying than general con- sumers. Of note are the areas of core professional service delivery and the promotion of greater awareness of the full range of services available from community pharmacies. Many potential issues could be addressed through a greater level of consumer engage- ment in the development, implementation and reviewing of community pharmacy services. Overall all participants reported that personalised service from their community pharmacist was highly valued and was a key need and expectation of community pharmacy. Methadology Telephone interviews with consumers Questions covered topics such as: the purpose of the visit to the pharmacy; how often the consumers get advice from the phar- macist; choice of pharmacy; waiting times for prescriptions; lan- guage issues; performance of pharmacists and other staff; poten- tial improvements to pharmacies; consumer needs and expectations; use of expanded services (for example, screening, monitoring, home medicines review); and demographics of par- ticipant and household. Exit interviews Face-to-face surveys were conducted with customers as they left community pharmacies. Exit survey respondents were also clas- sified as either health or non-health consumers. Resulting data were adjusted according to frequency of visit in order to correct for over-sampling of frequent visitors. Consumer demographics Social and cultural norms core services Figure One: Framework for representing consumer experiences, needs and expectations in relation to the quality of pharmacy services specialist services Quality of pharmacy services functional quality compliance with technical quality THE AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF PHARMACY VOL.87 NOVEMBER 2006 ? 73 Professional standards