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A pilot study of a pharmacist-led prescribing program for final-year medical students

By David A. Newby, Barrie Stokes and Anthony J. Smith


Abstract Background Junior doctors undertake a significant amount of prescribing; however, they are not well prepared for this, and report they would like more training in their undergraduate courses. To address this we tested a pharmacist-led prescribing program for final-year medical students. Methods Sixteen final-year students took part in the program. The program involved students writing prescriptions and getting feedback from clinical pharmacists, undertaking prescribing and calculation tutorials, and spending time in the pharmacy department. Evaluation included a pre- and post-assessment of their confidence and skills in prescribing, and a feedback session discussing the strengths and weakness of the program, and their perceptions about the role of pharmacists. Changes in the pre- and post-assessment of confidence and skills were examined with permutation and Mann-Whitney U tests. Results There was a significant improvement in students’ confidence in prescribing, and a small but consistent improvement in prescribing skills. Of note, no student prescribed inappropriately and potentially harmfully after the program. Participants were positive about the program, and indicated a better understanding about the pharmacists’ role and their ability to support them as junior doctors. Conclusions This study has shown the potential effect of a pharmacist-led prescribing program on the skills and confidence in prescribing by medical students. It provided an interprofessional teaching opportunity, preparing students for a team-based approach to patient management

Topics: Pharmacist, Interprofessional teaching., Prescribing., Medical students., Special aspects of education, LC8-6691
Publisher: BMC
Year: 2019
DOI identifier: 10.1186/s12909-019-1486-1
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