Impact of electronic prescription on the job descriptions of community pharmacy staff in Finland - a survey of pharmacy owners
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CitationTimonen Johanna. Kauppinen Hanna. Ahonen Riitta. (2016). Impact of electronic prescription on the job descriptions of community pharmacy staff in Finland - a survey of pharmacy owners. Journal of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research, 7 (4) , 225-231. 10.1111/jphs.12145.
A fully operational and nationwide electronic prescription (ePrescription) system has been implemented by law in Finland. The aim was to explore the impact of ePrescription on the job descriptions of pharmaceutical and technical staff in Finnish community pharmacies from the pharmacy owners’ perspective. The effects of ePrescription on measures related to equipment and furnishings in pharmacies were also explored.
A postal survey was conducted among a random sample of Finnish pharmacy owners (n = 191) in 2014. Descriptive statistical analyses were performed.
The final study material consisted of 155 questionnaires (81% response rate). In many pharmacies the use of ePrescription had affected the job descriptions of technical (73.9%) and pharmaceutical staff (47.4%), and the pharmacy owner's own use of time (44.4%). Prescription processing had decreased among technical staff (92.9%) and increased among pharmaceutical staff (42.3%). Prescription processing and dispensing had become quicker. The implementation of ePrescription had not affected the size of the staff in most of the pharmacies (72.1%). ePrescription had resulted in measures related to furnishings and/or equipment in 60.6% of the pharmacies. Most often, computer equipment had been updated (66.0%) or more computers had been purchased (59.6%).
The implementation of ePrescription has had an impact on the job descriptions of pharmacy staff in Finnish community pharmacies. Particularly affected has been the job description of technical staff, who now process fewer prescriptions. The transition to the new technology has also necessitated investment in computer equipment and furnishings for dispensing work at pharmacies.