Back to Journals » Integrated Pharmacy Research and Practice » Volume 6

Role of the pharmacist in reducing healthcare costs: current insights

Authors Dalton K, Byrne S

Received 31 October 2016

Accepted for publication 9 December 2016

Published 25 January 2017 Volume 2017:6 Pages 37—46

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IPRP.S108047

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Akshita Wason

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Jonathan Ling


Kieran Dalton, Stephen Byrne

Pharmaceutical Care Research Group, School of Pharmacy, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland

Abstract: Global healthcare expenditure is escalating at an unsustainable rate. Money spent on medicines and managing medication-related problems continues to grow. The high prevalence of medication errors and inappropriate prescribing is a major issue within healthcare systems, and can often contribute to adverse drug events, many of which are preventable. As a result, there is a huge opportunity for pharmacists to have a significant impact on reducing healthcare costs, as they have the expertise to detect, resolve, and prevent medication errors and medication-related problems. The development of clinical pharmacy practice in recent decades has resulted in an increased number of pharmacists working in clinically advanced roles worldwide. Pharmacist-provided services and clinical interventions have been shown to reduce the risk of potential adverse drug events and improve patient outcomes, and the majority of published studies show that these pharmacist activities are cost-effective or have a good cost:benefit ratio. This review demonstrates that pharmacists can contribute to substantial healthcare savings across a variety of settings. However, there is a paucity of evidence in the literature highlighting the specific aspects of pharmacists’ work which are the most effective and cost-effective. Future high-quality economic evaluations with robust methodologies and study design are required to investigate what pharmacist services have significant clinical benefits to patients and substantiate the greatest cost savings for healthcare budgets.

Keywords: pharmacoeconomics, pharmaceutical care, clinical pharmacy, cost-effectiveness, economic evaluation

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]