Perspectives of practising pharmacists towards interprofessional education and collaborative practice in Qatar.
El-Hajj, Maguy Saffouh
Joseph, Sundari Catherine
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EL-AWAISI, A., EL HAJJ, M.S., JOSEPH, S. and DIACK, L. 2018. Perspectives of practising pharmacists towards interprofessional education and collaborative practice in Qatar. International journal of clinical pharmacy [online], Latest Articles. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11096-018-0686-9
Background: Healthcare is provided by a variety of different professionals, including pharmacists who are integral members of the team, and all are expected to work collaboratively to provide quality care. Little is known about the perceptions of pharmacists in Qatar towards interprofessional collaboration. Positive attitudes towards interprofessional education are essential to successful implementation of interprofessional collaboration. Therefore, to develop effective collaboration strategies in practice settings, it was essential to survey the attitudes of practising pharmacists towards collaboration. Objective: To explore the awareness, views, attitudes and perceptions of practising pharmacists in Qatar towards interprofessional education and collaborative practice. Setting: Community, hospital and primary healthcare settings in Qatar. Methods: This was a two-staged sequential explanatory mixed method design. It utilised a quantitative survey (Stage 1), based on a modified version of the Readiness for Interprofessional Learning Scale. This was followed by a qualitative stage, utilising focus groups (Stage 2). Main outcome measures: (1) Qatar pharmacists' attitudes towards interprofessional education and collaborative practice; (2) Practising pharmacists' perspectives in relation to enablers, barriers and recommendations regarding interprofessional education and collaborative practice. Results: 63% of the practising pharmacists (n = 178) responded to the survey. Three focus groups followed (total n = 14). High scores indicating readiness and positive attitudes towards interprofessional education were reported for pharmacists working in hospital, community and primary healthcare settings. Qualitative analysis identified three overarching themes in relation to the enablers, barriers and recommendations for practising pharmacists working collaboratively. The enabling themes were: professional and patient related benefits, and current positive influences in Qatar; the barriers were patients' negative perceptions; the status of the pharmacy profession and current working practices and processes; the recommendations related to improving patients' perceptions about pharmacists and enhancing the status of pharmacy profession in Qatar. The findings from this study highlighted two major observations: the lack of existence of collaborative practice and hierarchy and power play. Conclusion Pharmacists demonstrated willingness and readiness to develop interprofessional learning and collaborative practice with significant steps already taken towards improving collaborative working practices in different care settings.