Quality improvement in community pharmacy: a qualitative investigation of the impact of a postgraduate quality improvement educational module on pharmacists understanding and practice
Objective Quality improvement (QI) is increasingly featuring in the United Kingdom (UK) National Health Service (NHS) agenda to promote safety, effectiveness and patient experience. However, the use of QI techniques by healthcare professionals appears limited and constrained with only isolated examples of good practice. This study explores QI within the pharmacy context. Focusing on the community pharmacy ‘Healthy Living Pharmacy scheme’, this study aims to explore changes in QI understanding resulting from a postgraduate QI educational intervention. Methods Four focus groups were held involving 13 community pharmacists enrolled onto a newly developed postgraduate QI educational module. Two focus groups were held before and two after the module’s completion. Knowledge of QI and practical applications following the learning was explored. Key findings Three themes emerged: pharmacists’ motivation for learning about QI, conceptual understanding and translation into practice. Pharmacists expressed positive views about learning new skills but expressed logistical concerns about how they would accommodate the extra learning. Prior knowledge of QI was found to be lacking and its application in practice ineffectual. Following completion of the QI module, significant improvements in comprehension and application were seen. Pharmacists considered it too soon to make an assessment on patient outcomes as their improvements required time to effectively embed changes in practice. Conclusions Quality improvement forms an important part of the NHS quality and safety agenda; however, community pharmacists may not currently have adequate knowledge of QI principles. The postgraduate educational intervention showed promising results in pharmacist’s knowledge, organisational culture and application in practice.
open access article
Citation : Latif, A., Gulzar, N., Gohil, S, Ansong, T. (2020). Quality improvement in community pharmacy: a qualitative investigation of the impact of a postgraduate quality improvement educational module on pharmacists understanding and practice. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice,
ISSN : 2042-7174
Research Institute : Leicester Institute for Pharmaceutical Innovation - From Molecules to Practice (LIPI)
Peer Reviewed : Yes
- Leicester School of Pharmacy