Fundamentals of the role
fundamentals of the role of the Pharmacist well understood? In an environment
of increasing public expectations, workforce pressures, and significant
scientific and technological advances, it is important to define the
contribution the pharmacist makes not only to the healthcare team but more
widely. Without clarity on the pharmacist’s role, we cannot effectively select,
educate and train pharmacists, or plan for the future pharmacy workforce.
create a generic definition of what it means to be a pharmacist is fraught with
difficulties. Much seems to depend on context — the sector of work, the
pharmacist’s career stage and experience. Furthermore, a role cannot be defined
in isolation without considering the inter-relationships with other
professionals. However, the drive for a flexible, adaptable workforce that can
meet the health demands of an increasingly older population with multiple
long-term conditions means that there is greater working across Professional
boundaries, and professional roles inevitably become more homogenous. Although
taking on new roles can be enriching, there is also a danger that a Profession
can lose its way, or worse, lose its identity. Poorly defined professional role
boundaries can also become a source of conflict and there is a risk that the
best interests of patients and public are not served. The role of the
pharmacist must be congruent with the roles of others such as doctors, nurses,
pharmacy technicians etc. The nature of authority and responsibility between
these relationships should be clear as should what the formal and informal
expectations of one another are.
What’s in a role?
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