Communication is a key issue in the delivery of healthcare services. In the pharmacy context, pharmacist-patient communication may vary from brief counselling episodes to extensive pharmaceutical care consultations. Many community pharmacies have developed practices to facilitate the effective delivery of pharmacy care, in particular to chronic patients, although the nature and extent of the services differ widely from country to country. Diabetes-focused pharmaceutical care is an example highlighting both the opportunities and challenges associated with an expansion of pharmacy services from product dispensing to pharmaceutical consultations. An area of particular challenge of such an expansion of pharmaceutical services is the development of expertise in the delivery of patient-centred pharmaceutical consultations. Although well known to medicine and nursing, patient-centredness has not been routinely incorporated into the training of pharmacists, evaluation of pharmacy practice or conduct of pharmacy-related research. There are few studies of the communication process based on analysis of an objective record such as an audio or video recording and the common perspective is largely a one-way information flow from pharmacist to patient. This has hampered the field's ability to link pharmacy communication to outcomes, including patient adherence and satisfaction with services. An extensive body of communication research on physician-patient interaction, employing the Roter Interaction Analysis System (RIAS), exists and the system presents a potentially useful tool in the pharmacy context. The purpose of this essay is to explore the utility of the RIAS for analysis of pharmacist-patient interaction and its implication for improving patient care and optimizing pharmacy-specific outcomes.
- Pharmaceutical care
- Pharmacist-patient communication
- Roter Interaction Analysis System
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmaceutical Science
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health