Stakeholder perspectives on pharmacist involvement in a memory clinic to review patients’ medication management and assist with deprescribing

Amanda Cross, Vivien J. Le, Johnson George, Michael C. Woodward, Rohan A. Elliott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Background: Memory clinics usually involve a team of health professionals who assess and review people with memory impairment. Memory clinic patients are typically older, have multiple comorbidities and potentially inappropriate polypharmacy. Pharmacists are not typically part of memory clinic teams. Objective: To explore stakeholder perspectives on pharmacist involvement in a memory clinic to conduct medication reviews and assist with deprescribing potentially inappropriate/unnecessary medications. Methods: Quantitative and qualitative evaluation of stakeholder perspectives within a deprescribing feasibility study. Patient/carer questionnaires were administered at 6-month follow-up. Fax-back surveys were sent to general practitioners (GPs) shortly after the pharmacist review. A focus group was conducted with memory clinic staff and semi-structured interviews with pharmacists at conclusion of the study. Focus group/interviews were transcribed and thematically analysed. Results: Most patients/carers found the pharmacist medication review helpful (84%, 31/37) and believed it was important to have pharmacists in the memory clinic (92%, 36/39). Twenty-one (48%) GPs responded to the survey; most found the pharmacist reports useful for identifying inappropriate medication and providing deprescribing recommendations (86% and 81%, respectively), and 90% thought a pharmacist review should be part of the memory clinic service. Feedback from memory clinic staff and pharmacists was largely positive. Questions were raised by some staff about whether deprescribing fell within the clinic's scope of practice. Challenges associated with memory clinic-GP communication were highlighted. Conclusion: Patients, GPs and memory clinic staff were receptive to increased pharmacist involvement in the memory clinic. Stakeholder feedback will inform the development and delivery of pharmacist medication reviews and deprescribing in memory clinics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)681-688
Number of pages8
JournalResearch in Social and Administrative Pharmacy
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020


  • Dementia
  • Deprescribing
  • Memory clinic
  • Perspectives
  • Pharmacist

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