Community Pharmacists and People affected by Dementia



Veronica Smith will be presenting a poster at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) annual conference in Birmingham next week (8-9th September), she will also be at the Pharmacy Research UK stand promoting research to pharmacists.




Veronica’s poster presentation will focus on her study exploring community pharmacists and people affected by dementia




This study aims to identify what relationship community pharmacists have with people with dementia and their caregivers. The intention is to allow a broader understanding of the impacts on the individual community pharmacist of supporting people affected by dementia in order to strengthen policy.






Study part one


Through individual interviews with four senior pharmacists working in advisory positions, key information about pharmacy practice was gained. Community health care professionals were interviewed to establish the relationship between them and the pharmacist.


Study part two


The second part of the study focused on the services community pharmacists provide for people affected by dementia. The researcher shadowed five community pharmacies; eight individual interviews were conducted with community pharmacists and two with technicians. Nine participants with dementia and their carers were interviewed as matched pairs and three as carers alone.




Main Results and conclusions


Community pharmacies offer support to people affected by dementia in a number of ways; prescription management, medication and health advice.


  • Many pharmacists provide medication using a monitored dosage system; this may increase medicine concordance in people with dementia.


Community pharmacists have no formal way of knowing whether a patient has a diagnosis of dementia, often relying on recognising dementia medication.


  • Better information sharing between the pharmacist and other primary health care providers could amend this.


The community pharmacist is a health professional, uniquely available without appointment. They are ideally placed to initiate preferred early referral for dementia diagnosis.


  • A formal referral system may expedite identification.




For further information please contact Veronica: