A Systematic Review of the Effect of Telepharmacy Services in the Community Pharmacy Setting on Care Quality and Patient Safety
- Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 32, Number 2, May 2021
- pp. 737-750
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While community pharmacy-based telepharmacy services can expand medication access for underserved communities, the safety and quality of these services is uncertain. A systematic review was conducted in August 2020 exploring the effect of community pharmacy-based telepharmacy services on patient safety and care quality. Database searches identified 866 studies, of which six met the inclusion and the risk of bias measurement criteria. Medication dispensing errors, adherence, and patient satisfaction were the most frequently evaluated outcomes. Literature suggests no overall difference in medication safety and adherence, conflicting evidence on patient satisfaction, and insufficient evidence on inappropriate medication use in community pharmacy-based telepharmacies compared with traditional pharmacies. Due to the potential for high risk of bias, no definitive conclusions could be made about telepharmacy outcomes. Research with stronger study designs and more rigorous evaluation methodologies is needed to create conclusive evidence on the effectiveness of community pharmacy-based telepharmacy services.