Researchers’ experiences of pharmacy involvement: a UK cross-sectional survey

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We aimed to explore the experiences and opinions of researchers who have involved pharmacy professionals in research studies. Pharmacy teams are valued healthcare professionals, with a wide knowledge base and skill set. They have regular contact with service users who may be interested in research, placing them in a good position for collaboration with researchers.

Cross-sectional survey circulated to researchers in the UK; analysed using descriptive, quantitative methods.

Key findings
A total of 238 responses were received from researchers, mainly within hospitals and universities. Most had more than 10 years of experience (45%) and had worked on 2–10 studies involving pharmacies (54%), frequently requiring hospital services (74%). Two-thirds of researchers had worked on clinical trials of investigational medicinal products. Most researchers worked with pharmacy teams that all had previous research experience (78%) yet did not involve them in participant recruitment (85%). Pharmacy staff frequently managed or dispensed medication (43%), however also engaged with other research-related tasks. Their previous experience and keenness were desirable qualities for researchers. Many respondents had a positive experience of collaboration and acknowledged various advantages (e.g. developing training/knowledge) and disadvantages (e.g. staffing issues).

Researchers’ positive impression of working with the pharmacy sector bodes well for future collaborations. Many had experience with pharmacy, however, those more unfamiliar should consider the roles staff could perform; and pharmacy teams and professional bodies should advocate their involvement. For collaboration to prosper, we should promote the benefits of research engagement and consider how to overcome known challenges.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberrmac049
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

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