Roles of the emergency medicine pharmacist: A systematic review

Cristina Roman, Gail Edwards, Michael Dooley, Biswadev Mitra

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose. Results of a systematic literature review to identify roles for emergency medicine (EM) pharmacists beyond traditionally reported activities and to quantify the benefits of these roles in terms of patient outcomes are reported. Summary. Emergency department (ED)–based clinical pharmacy is a rapidly growing practice area that has gained support in a number of countries globally, particularly over the last 5–10 years. A systematic literature search covering the period 1995–2016 was conducted to characterize emerging EM pharmacist roles and the impact on patient outcomes. Six databases were searched for research publications on pharmacist participation in patient care in a general ED or trauma center that documented interventions by ED-based pharmacists; 15 results satisfied the inclusion criteria. Six reported studies evaluated EM pharmacist involvement in the care of critically ill patients, 5 studies evaluated antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) activities via pharmacist review of positive cultures, 2 studies assessed pharmacist involvement in generating orders for nurse-administered home medications and 2 reviewed publications focused on EM pharmacist involvement in management of healthcare-associated pneumonia and dosing of phenytoin. A diverse range of positive patient outcomes was identified. The included studies were assessed to be of low quality. Conclusion. A systematic review of the literature revealed 3 key emerging areas of practice for the EM pharmacist that are associated with positive patient outcomes. These included involvement in management of critically ill patients, AMS roles, and ordering of home medications in the ED.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)796-806
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Health-System Pharmacy
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018


  • Emergency medicine
  • Pharmacists
  • Pharmacy service hospital
  • Resuscitation
  • Trauma centers

Cite this