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Impact of the clinical pharmacist interventions on prevention of pharmacotherapy related problems in the paediatric intensive care unit

Abstract

Background Problems related to pharmacotherapy are common in patients admitted to the paediatric intensive care unit (PICU) and are associated with increased healthcare costs. Data on the impact of clinical pharmacist interventions to prevent pharmacotherapy-related problems and to minimize costs in the PICU are limited. Objectives To evaluate the number and type of clinical pharmacist interventions in the PICU and to determine cost savings associated with them. Setting a ten bed PICU of a tertiary-care university hospital in Brazil. Method This was a prospective, observational study conducted over 1-year. The Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) tool was applied at the beginning of the study to assess drug-related risks in the PICU and to guide clinical pharmacist interventions. Main outcome measure Number and type of clinical pharmacist interventions and healthcare-related costs. Results One hundred sixty-two children were followed-up by the clinical pharmacist and 1586 prescriptions were evaluated; pharmacotherapy-related problems were identified in 12.4% of them. Sixteen of 75 failure modes identified by FMEA were potentially reduced by the clinical pharmacist interventions. There were 197 interventions with a cost saving of R$ 15,118.73 (US$ 4828.00). Clinical pharmacist interventions were related to drug interaction and therapeutic monitoring (34.5%), drug selection (22.3%), dosing and frequency (16.8%), prescription (13.2%) and administration (13.2%). Ninety-seven per cent of the clinical pharmacist interventions were accepted by the medical team. The interventions with larger cost savings were related to administration (39%). Conclusion The clinical pharmacist interventions minimized the risks of pharmacotherapy-related problems and contributed to the reduction of costs associated with medical prescription.

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Acknowledgements

We thank all the members of the FMEA team for their participation in this study.

Funding

This study did not receive any specific funding support.

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Correspondence to Ana Carlotti.

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The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

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Malfará, M., Pernassi, M., Aragon, D. et al. Impact of the clinical pharmacist interventions on prevention of pharmacotherapy related problems in the paediatric intensive care unit. Int J Clin Pharm 40, 513–519 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11096-018-0632-x

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Keywords

  • Brazil
  • Clinical pharmacy
  • DRPs
  • Healthcare costs
  • Paediatric intensive care unit
  • Pharmacotherapy-related problems