The impact of pharmacist interventions on quality use of medicines, quality of life and health outcomes in people with dementia and/or cognitive impairment: a systematic review

Tuan Anh Nguyen, Julia Gilmartin-Thomas, Edwin Chin Kang Tan, Lisa Kalisch-Ellett, Tesfahun Eshetie, Marianne Gillam, Emily Reeve

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review


Background: Medication use in people with dementia and/or cognitive impairment (PWD/CI) is challenging. As medication experts, pharmacists have an important role in improving care of this vulnerable population. Objective: Systematically review evidence for the effectiveness of pharmacist-led interventions on quality use of medicines, quality of life, and health outcomes of PWD/CI. Methods: Asystematic review was conducted using MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, Allied and Complementary Medicine (AMED) and Cumulative index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) databases from conception to 20 March 2017. Full articles published in English were included. Data were synthesized using a narrative approach. Results: Nine studies were eligible for inclusion. All studies were from high-income countries and assessed pharmacist-led medication management services. There was great variability in the content and focus of services described and outcomes reported. Pharmacists were found to provide a number of cognitive services including medication reconciliation, medication review, and medication adherence services. These services were generally effective with regards to improving quality use of medicines and health outcomes for PWD/CI and their caregivers, and for saving costs to the healthcare system. Pharmacist-led medication and dementia consultation services may also improve caregiver understanding of dementia and the different aspects of pharmacotherapy, thus improving medication adherence. Conclusion: Emerging evidence suggests that pharmacist-led medication management services for PWD/CI may improve outcomes. Future research should confirm these findings using more robust study designs and explore additional roles that pharmacists could undertake in the pursuit of supporting PWD/CI.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-96
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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