The Covid-19 Report of the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP) outlines how both the Association and its members across Europe contributed to combating the pandemic.
As experts in medications, hospital pharmacists have been instrumental in ensuring that hospital patients were able to access their medicines. For instance, they participated in and supported vaccination campaigns across Europe, engaged in the development of clinical trials, and carried out pharmacovigilance activities linked to medication interactions in Covid-19 patients. In addition, the hospital pharmacy profession adapted itself to the situation by further integrating its expertise in multi-professional care teams. For example, hospital pharmacists supported nurses with the preparation of medicines for intensive care units and worked collaboratively with doctors on medication reviews to ensure the best possible therapeutic management for Covid-19 patients.
Besides showcasing the contributions of the hospital pharmacy profession, EAHP’s Covid-19 Report contains several recommendations that will not only help to respond to future health threats, but also support the overall activities of the hospital pharmacy service to obtain better outcomes for patients.
The recommendations focus on the need for a robust healthcare workforce, addressing medicine shortages, the importance of prospective risk assessment and communication, the value of multidisciplinary collaboration, the need for pharmacy specialisation programmes, and the recognition of the role of hospital pharmacists in multi-professional care teams and vaccination campaigns.
Reflecting on the past two years during which hospital pharmacists supported efforts to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, EAHP President András Süle underlined that “the roles of our profession have expanded tremendously. Hospital pharmacists engage more in multidisciplinary teams and have become more visible on wards through an increased provision of clinical services. This momentum needs to be used to ensure that our profession remains one of the key players in the delivery of care to patients across Europe,” he said.
“In particular, I hope that the recommendation contained in EAHP’s Covid-19 Report will be a step toward ensuring a high degree of safety and quality during times of crisis due to the contributions of hospital pharmacists — as valued members of the interprofessional healthcare team — that can and should play an integral role, focusing on medication management, medication reconciliation, preventive care, and patient education.”