Views of pharmacists on involvement in ward rounds in selected public hospitals in Limpopo Province
Background: Pharmacist participation in ward rounds is of increasing interest for better pharmaceutical care, yet most pharmacists do not engage in this activity.
Objective: The objective was to obtain public sector pharmacistsf views and perceptions on their involvement in ward rounds.
Method: A rapid assessment was conducted using a semi-structured questionnaire sent to five hospitals in Limpopo Province.
Results: There were 55 respondents (61.8% female), mainly from the Polokwane-Mankweng Hospital Complex (69.1%); 45 (82%) were young pharmacists aged 25 to 34, whilst experience varied from 0 . 5 years (69.1%), 5 . 10 years (16.4%) to > 10 years (14.5%). The respondents
included interns (n = 21), community service pharmacists (n = 7) and junior pharmacists (n = 8). Most had trained at University of Limpopo (n = 49), with a few from North-West University (n = 4), Wits (n = 1) and Durban.Westville (n = 1). The majority (94.5%) felt that it was necessary for pharmacists to be involved in ward rounds. Twenty-seven respondents
(49.1%) said that pharmacists were involved in ward rounds and 21 of these (77.8%) said ward visits were to check on drug stocks, but not for direct patient care. Proposals to prepare pharmacists better for ward rounds included pre-service training (34.9%), internship (37.2%), community service (4.7%), post-graduate courses (8.1%) and continuing professional
Conclusion: Pharmacists in the public hospitals studied in Limpopo were willing to be involved in clinical ward rounds and suggested that this be introduced during undergraduate training. These findings support the plans for the Turfloop BPharm programme to introduce clinical ward rounds.