The impact of an aged care pharmacist in a department of emergency medicine

Mortimer, Cindy Lee, Emmerton, Lynne and Lum, Elaine (2011) The impact of an aged care pharmacist in a department of emergency medicine. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, 17 3: 478-485. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2753.2010.01454.x

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Author Mortimer, Cindy Lee
Emmerton, Lynne
Lum, Elaine
Title The impact of an aged care pharmacist in a department of emergency medicine
Journal name Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1356-1294
Publication date 2011-06-01
Year available 2010
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2753.2010.01454.x
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 17
Issue 3
Start page 478
End page 485
Total pages 8
Editor Andrew Miles
Place of publication Oxford, U.K.
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Rationale, aims and objectives  Departments of Emergency Medicine (DEM) have experienced increased demand largely because of the aging population. This project aimed to assess the impact of a specialist aged care pharmacist (ACP) on the efficiency and effectiveness of care of older patients seeking emergency treatment.

Method  Eligible patients presenting to the DEM of Bundaberg Hospital (Australia), aged ≥65 years with a chronic condition, or ≥70 years without a chronic condition, and an Australian Triage Category score of ≥2, were alternately allocated to either the ACP (for medication reconciliation and medication review roles, along with patient education and referrals where warranted), or continued management by the DEM doctor (control group).

Results  A total of 199 patients were included (intervention, n = 101; control, n = 98), with no significant difference in mean age or gender distribution. While the ACP-managed group demonstrated a significantly greater length of stay than the control group, some confounding was likely. The ACP demonstrated greater vigilance than usual care in ensuring completeness and accuracy in charted medication orders. The ACP also provided timely clinical review for medication-related problems, with 81 issues identified for 73 admitted patients, and 24 issues among the 28 discharged patients. Qualitative data were strongly supportive, valuing and accepting of the ACP role.

Conclusions  This study provides evidence, on balance, supporting the integration of an ACP in the DEM assessing elderly patients. Further research of this role using longer sampling, in multiple sites and with economic analysis is recommended.
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd, Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice
Keyword Aged care
Emergency medicine
Medication-related problems
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article first published online: 11 OCT 2010

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
School of Pharmacy Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 11 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 13 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 14 Mar 2011, 19:49:09 EST by Charna Kovacevic on behalf of School of Pharmacy