Background: Evidence-based policymaking is critical for improving the standards of pharmacy practice. Within this context, this study aimed to explore the perception of health policymakers (PMs) about the standards of community pharmacy practice in Lahore, Pakistan. Methodology: A qualitative approach was used to gain an in-depth knowledge of PMs about the community pharmacy practice and extended pharmacy services (EPS) in Lahore. Government officials belonging to the Drug Authority of Pakistan and involved in regulation and policymaking were targeted for the study. Seven respondents were interviewed through a validated semi-structured interview guide. All interviews were audio-taped, transcribed verbatim, and were then analysed for thematic content analysis. Results: Thematic content analysis yielded four major themes: (1) Lack of law enforcement; (2) Support for EPS; (3) Need for the change in the pharmacy system; (4) Barriers towards practice change. Although PMs encouraged the implementation of EPS, their understanding of the true concept of EPS was questionable. Several barriers towards practice change were identified by the PMs. Conclusion: Pharmacists' active involvement in community practice, enforcement of legislation and revisiting pharmacy curriculum could lay the foundations for the standardisation of community pharmacy practice in Lahore, Pakistan.
|Number of pages
|Journal of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research
|Early online date
|19 Jan 2018
|Published - Mar 2018