Valuing the extended role of prescribing pharmacist in general practice: results from a discrete choice experiment

Gerard, Karen, Tinelli, Michela, Latter, Sue, Blenkinsopp, Alison and Smith, Alesha (2012) Valuing the extended role of prescribing pharmacist in general practice: results from a discrete choice experiment. Value in Health, 15 5: 699-707. doi:10.1016/j.jval.2012.02.006

Author Gerard, Karen
Tinelli, Michela
Latter, Sue
Blenkinsopp, Alison
Smith, Alesha
Title Valuing the extended role of prescribing pharmacist in general practice: results from a discrete choice experiment
Journal name Value in Health   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1098-3015
Publication date 2012-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.jval.2012.02.006
Volume 15
Issue 5
Start page 699
End page 707
Total pages 9
Place of publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
To quantify patients' preferences for new pharmacist independent prescribing services in general practice for managing common existing long-term conditions compared with usual medical prescribing.

A discrete choice experiment cross-sectional survey was conducted in five general practices in England (October-November 2009). Four service attributes reported on the length of consultation and aspects of patient-professional interaction. A choice between three alternatives - novel pharmacist independent prescribing service ("prescribing pharmacist"), "own (family) doctor" service, and "available (family) doctor" service - was presented. Alternative regression models were compared according to their goodness of fit, and the preferred one was used to inform policy analysis.

A total of 451 patients completed questionnaires. Respondents preferred a "pharmacist" or "own doctor" compared with "available doctor," with a larger value given to own doctor. All attributes on patient-professional interaction were important in choosing how to manage diagnosed hypertension, while the "length of consultation" (P = 0.42) did not have any impact. The impact of introducing a pharmacist prescribing service into a general practice setting was estimated from these findings. Patients' preferences suggested that about 16% of consultations with a patient's own doctor can be switched to a prescribing pharmacist instead. Although there is a stronger preference for seeing own doctor, alternative combinations of attribute levels can be used to compensate and reconfigure a more preferred prescribing pharmacist service.


The pharmacist service is valued by patients as an alternative to doctor prescribing in primary care and therefore represents an acceptable form of service delivery when informing policy.
Keyword Discrete choice experiment (DCE)
NMP services
Patient preferences
Pharmacist independent prescribing services
Primary care
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Pharmacy Publications
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