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Int J Clin Pharm. 2012 Aug;34(4):587-95. doi: 10.1007/s11096-012-9648-9. Epub 2012 Jun 6.

Simulated caregivers: their feasibility in educating pharmacy staff to manage children's ailments.

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1
Building A15, Faculty of Pharmacy, Science Road, University of Sydney, Camperdown Campus, Sydney, NSW, 2006, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Community pharmacy staff play a crucial role in the management of common childhood ailments. Simulated patient studies have not yet explored the management of children's cough/cold and fever, nor have many previous studies used simulated patient methods with focus on self-assessment as a training tool to shape future counselling behaviour.

OBJECTIVES:

To assess and shape the counselling behavior of pharmacy staff when dealing with children's cough/cold and fever; investigate influential factors of counselling behavior; and explore participant perceptions of simulated patient methods as a training tool, with particular emphasis on self-assessment.

SETTING:

Community pharmacies in the inner city region of metropolitan Sydney.

METHOD:

Six simulated caregivers visited eight community pharmacies. After applying their scenario, the interaction was scored and immediate performance feedback was delivered in the form of self-assessment. Semi-structured interviews followed, focusing on participant perceptions of self-assessment.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Scores for each simulated patient interaction, and qualitative interviews responses from participants.

RESULTS:

The highest mean percentage score achieved was for the symptom based request for a cough/cold remedy in a five year old (48 ± 14.3 %), while the lowest was the direct product request equivalent (22 ± 8.5 %). Qualitative results showed that simulated patient visits were viewed positively and self-assessment was highly regarded.

CONCLUSION:

Using simulated caregivers in pharmacy to assess and improve children's cough/cold and fever management is feasible and acceptable. The opportunity to self-assess is particularly beneficial, allowing participants to demonstrate key psychology principles associated with behaviour change.

PMID:
22669734
DOI:
10.1007/s11096-012-9648-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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