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Challenges and strategies in communication with people with dementia and their informal caregivers in community pharmacies - a narrative approach

Background: People with dementia and their informal caregivers get in touch with the healthcare system predominantly via contacts with primary care providers. Among these, community pharmacists have been denominated as the health professionals most accessible to the public. Communication with and counselling people with dementia and their informal caregivers present particular challenges to pharmacists.; Aim: This study aims to research the challenges faced and strategies used by community pharmacists who deal with people living with dementia and their informal caregivers.; Methods: Within the context of two workshops with 74 participants, 15 small groups were formed, each of which generated and discussed a small story. Fourteen of those narratives were reported, tape recorded and transcribed. In these 14 narratives, community pharmacists reflected on their experiences with people with dementia or their informal caregivers. The narratives were systematically analysed and interpreted.; Findings: Among the main challenges reported by the workshop participants are the difficulty of identifying a person with dementia; the question of what appropriate communication is; the only partially successful networking with doctors, nursing personnel and support institutions; unsuccessful counselling; and the tension between the economic situation and the care for people with dementia and their informal caregivers. In general, strategies for dealing with people with dementia are characterised by uncertainty whereas communication with informal caregivers is well rehearsed and effective.; Conclusions: Community pharmacies require possibilities to retreat for counselling as well as the possibility for pharmacists to take time for people with dementia and their informal caregivers in everyday pharmacy life. Reflective spaces for narrations about difficult situations provide relief for staff in community pharmacies. 

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Key Information

Type of Reference
Jour
Type of Work
Journal article
Publisher
John Wiley & Sons
ISBN/ISSN
1471-6712
Publication Year
2020
Issue Number
4
Journal Titles
Scandinavian Journal Of Caring Sciences
Volume Number
34
Start Page
852
End Page
860