Providing care to marginalised communities: a qualitative study of community pharmacy teams

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Health inequalities in the UK are widening, particularly since the COVID- 19 pandemic. Community pharmacies are the most visited healthcare provider in England and are ideally placed to provide and facilitate access to care for those most disadvantaged.
To explore the experiences and needs of community pharmacy teams in providing care for marginalised groups and how this has changed since the COVID-19 pandemic.
Design and Setting
A qualitative study in community pharmacy and across primary care.
Semi structured interviews were undertaken with members of community pharmacy teams, PCN pharmacists, GPs and nurses in the North of England.
Thirty one individuals participated in an interview (26 pharmacy staff, 3 GPs and 2 nurses). Most participants acknowledged that their pharmacy had become busier since COVID-19 due to increased footfall compounded by patient difficulties in navigating remote digital systems.
Few participants had received any formal training on working with marginalised communities; however, organisational barriers (lack of access to translation facilities), combined with inter-organisational barriers (lack of integrated care), made it more difficult to provide care for some marginalised groups. However, the continuity of care provided by many pharmacies was viewed as an important factor in enabling marginalised groups to access and receive care.
There are opportunities to better utilise the skills of community pharmacy teams. Resources such as access to translation services and interventions to enable better communication between community pharmacy teams and other primary care services such as general practice are essential.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere49
JournalBritish Journal of General Practice
Issue number738
Early online date29 Dec 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2024


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