Workforce sustainability and supporting positive practice in community pharmacy

“Workforce sustainability and supporting positive practice in community pharmacy” is a new report from the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) Community Pharmacy Section (CPS) published October 25, on the fifth anniversary of the Astana Declaration on primary health care. The report presents the findings of a literature review and a global survey exploring the barriers and enablers related to sustaining current community pharmacy services and undertaking expanded services, pharmacists’ mental health and well-being, and positive practice environments.

“The mental health and well-being of pharmacists working in community pharmacy settings is an important issue and it is critical for all community pharmacy workplaces to be supported with evidence-based strategies that can be adapted to foster positive mental health and well-being,” said CPS president Mr Sherif Guorgui.

Among the key findings of the report are that 62 percent of survey respondents acknowledged experiencing burnout or other mental health concerns related to their work as pharmacists. However, 60 per cent expressed a strong belief in the future of their profession, reflecting a strong conviction in the sustainability of the role and future potential of community pharmacy. On the other hand, only 10 per cent indicated that they were aware of any policies or formal programmes aimed at addressing workplace pressures and supporting mental health in their regions.

In the report, the CPS makes recommendations to promote and support professional sustainability and positive practice, which include:

  • Developing continuous evidence-based solutions dedicated to mental health and well-being of pharmacists and tailored to the unique challenges faced in community pharmacy;
  • Ensuring that any programme developed as part of expanded scope of practice of pharmacists include support for mental health and well-being of pharmacists; and
  • Putting emphasis on recognition and remuneration as part of the transition to patient-oriented services.

“The ability of pharmacists to do more for people has not gone unnoticed either at a community level or at a government and policy level, but it needs recognition and investment to be sustainable. By proactively implementing these recommendations at local, national and international levels, stakeholders can work collaboratively to secure the future and continued evolution of community pharmacy and ensure the continued delivery of high-quality patient care,” Mr Guorgui said.

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