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Pharmacist participation in health promotion activities : facilitators and barriers


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Howarth, Helen Dorice 2005 , 'Pharmacist participation in health promotion activities : facilitators and barriers', Research Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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The purpose of this study was to examine pharmacists' participation in health
promotion activities, particularly those activities undertaken outside the pharmacy.
Facilitators and barriers to this participation were determined.
The great majority (80.2%) of Australia's 12 000 pharmacists practise in retail
community pharmacies in a profession which is in demand, particularly in rural
areas. Traditionally dispensing medications and selling over-the-counter medicines,
pharmacists are one of the most accessible groups of health professionals, but the
literature suggests that most community pharmacists do not generally participate in
health promotion activities outside the pharmacy itself. Health promotion principles
should underpin all facets of pharmacy practice but nomenclature confusion and
limited definitions of health promotion restrict practice.
Tasmanian and Victorian pharmacists with Tasmanian undergraduate and graduate
students were surveyed by anonymous questionnaires. Demographic data,
participation in health promotion activities and facilitators and barriers to
participation were determined. Quantitative analysis of results was obtained using
SPSS-12.1 ©while qualitative data were extracted by themes. From a total of 458 responses, significant differences in practice were identified
between pharmacists in rural and urban practice. Although 42.4% of respondent
Tasmania pharmacists and 46.2% of respondent Victorian pharmacists gave
community talks in the previous two years, three-quarters of these respondents gave
only one to three talks. Fewer (20%) respondents were involved in writing newsletters, with only 5% involved in media presentations. In Tasmania, rural
pharmacists gave more community talks while urban pharmacists tended to write
newsletters. Victorian urban female practitioners engaged in community activities
contributed more than their male colleagues, but for all respondents, age or hours
worked did not restrict participation. Facilitators included interest, specific requests
and community service. Significant barriers included time constraints for Tasmanian
rural pharmacists but also the results revealed that urban pharmacists were not asked
to participate. Despite providing more community talks, rural pharmacists were less
confident public speakers. All respondents indicated there was lack of understanding
of the knowledge and skills a pharmacist could offer and that they were left out of
community activities, however most believed that, despite difficulties participating in
these activities, it was important for the profession to contribute. Lack of relevant literature examples and limited opportunities for professional
development currently restricts pharmacists' understanding of the extent of health
promotion practice. Widening community pharmacists' scope of practice in health
promotion outside the four walls of the pharmacy may have important implications
for the pharmacy workforce in its continued need to meet future demands.

Item Type: Thesis - Research Master
Authors/Creators:Howarth, Helen Dorice
Keywords: Pharmacists, Public health, Health education
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2005 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (MMedSc.)--University of Tasmania, 2005. Includes bibliographical references

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