The Role of Dermatologists, Nurses and Pharmacists in Chronic Dermatological Treatment: Patient and Provider Views and Experiences
Åsa Kettis Lindblad, Karin I. Kjellgren, Lena Ring, Marianne Maroti and Jørgen Serup
Effectively co-ordinated treatment support from healthcare providers (doctors, nurses and pharmacists) may improve patients’ adherence to treatment. The objective of this study was to identify patients’ and providers’ perceptions of the roles of different healthcare providers in dermatological treatment. Focus groups were used in two types of fora: patients with chronic dermatological diseases (n =2×6) and healthcare providers (n =2×6), including doctors, nurses and pharmacists working in dermatological care. Data were analysed according to the Consensual Qualitative Research approach. The respondents viewed the roles of the providers as complementary, but poorly co-ordinated. Treatment support is provided mainly by the nurse. During the doctor’s appointment, diagnosis and treatment decisions are often prioritized, leaving limited time for treatment support. The pharmacist’s provision of support is constrained by the lack of privacy and clinical history of individual patients. The most apparent “gap” in the chain of treatment support was between the pharmacist and the other providers. There was a wish for improved interprofessional collaboration to avoid giving conflicting advice. There is a need to improve interprofessional collaboration in dermatology, in order to optimize treatment support in clinical practice.