Clinical and humanistic impact of a minor ailment service in community
pharmacy: a cluster randomised controlled trial.
Abstract Aim To evaluate the clinical and humanistic patient outcomes of
a community pharmacy (CP) Minor Ailment Service (MAS) compared to usual
pharmacist care (UC). Methods A cluster randomised controlled trial was
conducted over six months in CP. The pharmacist-patient intervention
consisted of a standardised consultation on a web-based program using
co-developed protocols pharmacists’ training, practice change
facilitators and patients’ educational material. Patients were followed
up ten days after initial consultation. Primary outcomes were
appropriate medical referral and changes to direct product request.
Secondary outcomes were symptom resolution, reconsultation rates for the
same ailment and health related quality of life (HRQoL). Results A total
of 808 patients were recruited by 27 CP (323 MAS and 485 UC). Patients
visiting MAS pharmacies had higher odds for being referred to the
general practitioner (OR=2.343, CI95%=[1.146-4.792]); a higher
increase in HRQoL (OR=1.026, CI95%=[1.002-1.051]) and higher number
of reconsultation (OR=1.833, CI95%=[1.151-2.919]) compared to UC.
No significant differences were observed for symptom resolution and
modification of treatments with direct product requests. Conclusions
Patients with minor ailments are triaged and managed in a safe and
effective way in CP, facilitating appropriate self-selection of
non-prescription medicines. MAS reinforce pharmacists’ involvement with