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Pharmacists welcome antidepressant counselling at discharge


Clinical pharmacists would welcome the opportunity to counsel patients at discharge about use of antidepressants as long as their work load allowed, research shows.

Focus group discussions with pharmacists at 11 Flemish psychiatric hospitals showed that the openness to a role for the pharmacist in the team strongly influenced whether or not the position worked.

F Desplenter (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium) and colleagues note: “There existed differences in culture between hospitals on how they appreciated the role of the clinical pharmacist.”

Other factors that enabled pharmacists antidepressant counselling included an individual focus to the intervention and a regard of the pharmacist as a reliable healthcare professional, a key person in the study and the healthcare team.

Barriers to effective antidepressant counselling included the absence of openness to involving the pharmacist in the team, difficult communication between disciplines, uncertainty about the time of discharge and patients that need to tell their story.

Desplenter et al say, in the International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy, that the pharmacists interviewed welcomed future intitiatives if they fitted in with their actual job responsibilities.

Int J Clin Pharm 2011

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