OBJECTIVE: This study explored National Health Service (NHS) pharmacists' perceptions and experiences of pharmacist-led research in the workplace.
DESIGN: Semistructured, face-to-face discussions continued until distinct clusters of opinion characteristics formed. Verbatim transcripts of audio-recordings were subjected to framework analysis.
SETTING: Interviews were carried out with 54 pharmacists with diverse backgrounds and roles from general practices and secondary care in the UK's largest health authority.
RESULTS: The purpose and potential of health services research (HSR) was understood and acknowledged to be worthwhile by participants, but a combination of individual and system-related themes tended to make participation difficult, except when this was part of formal postgraduate education leading to a qualification. Lack of prioritisation was routinely cited as the greatest barrier, with motivation, confidence and competence as additional impediments. System-related themes included lack of practical support and pharmacy professional issues. A minority of highly motivated individuals managed to embed research participation into routine activity.
CONCLUSIONS: Most pharmacists realised the desirability and necessity of research to underpin pharmacy service expansion, but a combination of individual and professional level changes is needed to increase activity. Our findings provide a starting point for better understanding the mindset of hospital-based and general practice-based pharmacists towards research, as well as their perceived barriers and supports.
- pharmacist-led research in the workplace
- health service research
- pharmacy service expansion
- research participation