A national survey of emergency pharmacy practice in the United States

Michael C. Thomas, Nicole M. Acquisto, Mary Beth Shirk, Asad E. Patanwala

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Purpose. The results of a survey to characterize pharmacy practice in emergency department (ED) settings are reported. Methods. An electronic survey was sent to all members of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists' Emergency Medicine Connect group and the American College of Clinical Pharmacy's Emergency Medicine Practice and Research Network. Approximately 400 nontrainee pharmacy practitioners were invited to participate in the survey, which was open for 30 days. Descriptive statistics were used for all analyses. Results. Two hundred thirty-three responses to the survey that were at least partially completed were received. After the removal of duplicate responses and null records, 187 survey responses were retained. The majority of respondents were from community hospitals (59.6%) or academic medical centers (36.1%). A pharmacist's presence in the ED of more than eight hours per day on weekdays and weekends was commonly reported (68.7% of respondents); 49.4% of institutions provided more than eight hours of coverage daily. Nearly one in three institutions (34.8%) provided no weekend ED staffing. The most frequently reported hours of coverage were during the 1 p.m.-midnight time frame. The distribution of ED pharmacist activities, by category, was as follows (data are median reported time commitments): clinical, 25% (interquartile range [IQR], 15-40%); emergency response, 15% (IQR, 10-20%); order processing, 15% (IQR, 5-25%); medication reconciliation/history-taking, 10% (IQR, 5-25%); teaching, 10% (IQR, 5-15%); administrative, 5% (IQR, 3-10%); and scholarly endeavors, 0% (IQR, 0-5%). Conclusion. Pharmacists from academic and community EDs perform a variety of clinical, educational, and administrative activities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)386-394
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Health-System Pharmacy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Health Policy


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