International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy

, Volume 36, Issue 5, pp 976–985 | Cite as

PACE: Pharmacists use the power of communication in paediatric asthma

  • Amanda ElaroEmail author
  • Smita Shah
  • Luca N. Pomare
  • Carol L. Armour
  • Sinthia Z. Bosnic-Anticevich
Research Article


Background Paediatric asthma is a public health burden in Australia despite the availability of national asthma guidelines. Community pharmacy interventions focusing on paediatric asthma are scarce. Practitioner Asthma Communication and Education (PACE) is an evidence-based program, developed in the USA for general practice physicians, aimed at addressing the issues of poor clinician-patient communication in the management of paediatric asthma. This program has been shown to improve paediatric asthma management practices of general practitioners in the USA and Australia. The development of a PACE program for community pharmacists will fill a void in the current armamentarium for pharmacist-patient care. Objectives To adapt the educational program, PACE, to the community pharmacy setting. To test the feasibility of the new program for pharmacy and to explore its potential impact on pharmacists’ communication skills and asthma related practices. Setting Community pharmacies located within the Sydney metropolitan. Method The PACE framework was reviewed by the research team and amended in order to ensure its relevance within the pharmacy context, thereby developing PACE for Pharmacy. Forty-four pharmacists were recruited and trained in small groups in the PACE for Pharmacy workshops. Pharmacists’ satisfaction and acceptability of the workshops, confidence in using communication strategies pre- and post-workshop and self-reported behaviour change post workshop were evaluated. Main Outcome Measure Pharmacist self-reported changes in communication and teaching behaviours during a paediatric asthma consultation. Results All 44 pharmacists attended both workshops, completed pre- and post-workshop questionnaires and provided feedback on the workshops (100 % retention). The participants reported a high level of satisfaction and valued the interactive nature of the workshops. Following the PACE for Pharmacy program, pharmacists reported significantly higher levels in using the communication strategies, confidence in their application and their helpfulness. Pharmacists checked for written asthma self-management plan possession and inhaler device technique more regularly, and provided verbal instructions more frequently to paediatric asthma patients/carers at the initiation of a new medication. Conclusion This study provides preliminary evidence that the PACE program can be translated into community pharmacy. PACE for Pharmacy positively affected self-reported communication and education behaviours of pharmacists. The high response rate shows that pharmacists are eager to expand on their clinical role in primary healthcare.


Australia Childhood asthma Communication Community pharmacy PACE Paediatric asthma Pharmacist Primary care intervention 



A. Elaro is the recipient of scholarships from the Australian Postgraduate Award (APA).



Conflicts of interest

The authors declare no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.


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Copyright information

© Koninklijke Nederlandse Maatschappij ter bevordering der Pharmacie 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amanda Elaro
    • 1
    Email author
  • Smita Shah
    • 2
    • 3
  • Luca N. Pomare
    • 1
  • Carol L. Armour
    • 1
  • Sinthia Z. Bosnic-Anticevich
    • 1
  1. 1.The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, University of SydneyGlebeAustralia
  2. 2.Primary Health Care Education and Research UnitWestern Sydney Local Health DistrictSydneyAustralia
  3. 3.Sydney Medical SchoolUniversity of SydneySydneyAustralia

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