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Co-designing and assessing community pharmacy spaces

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Pharmacists and pharmacy staff represent the third largest professional health workforce in the world after nurses and doctors, and pharmacies are located close to where people live, shop and work. It is estimated that every adult makes 12 health-related visits to a pharmacy each year. Studies suggest the pharmacy environment may act as a barrier to greater engagement, and it remains unknown whether community pharmacy spaces are being used in ways that maximise their potential to support patients. For example, it is a requirement for community pharmacy premises to have a consultation room to deliver certain NHS-funded health services, such as Medicines Use Review (MUR) and New Medicine Service (NMS), but it is not known if or how these spaces effect the delivery and impact on patients and staff.
Current pharmacy premises guidance do not evaluate the pharmacy environment in order to ascertain whether or not it could be a barrier to greater engagement with pharmacy services. A number of hypotheses remain unexplored, for example, it is not known if current pharmacy spaces encourage better understanding to support adherence to prescribed medications, or whether they reduce unnecessary visits to the GP, or reduce hospital admissions and visits to accident and emergency departments, and improve health outcomes.
Why is this research needed now?
The professional role of UK pharmacists has changed considerably over the last 15 years. A Vision for Pharmacy in the New NHS advocated pharmacies should: be the first point of contact for the public to access health services; prescribe medicines; monitor outcomes; be a public health resource; and tackle health inequalities. This wide range of services is provided from three primary spaces: the pharmacy counter, the consultation room and the dispensary. However, pharmacy spaces have not been assessed to determine whether they support the delivery of current and future services, or the creation of effective Healthy Living Pharmacies or Research Ready Pharmacies, in line with current ambitions to develop the role of the pharmacy workforce.
Doctorate researcher development
We are committed to supporting the development of our students during and beyond the PhD. This will involve developing skills on independent and critical thinking, academic writing, research management, publishing in peer reviewed journals, presentation skills and networking. This interdisciplinary research will involve collaborative working with colleagues from Architecture, Psychology and other disciplines, as appropriate, both within and outside the University of Reading. We offer opportunities to engage with the University of Reading, Health Humanities Research Centre and other art-humanities related groups.

Funding Notes

If you hold your own funding and are interested in joining us, please get in touch. If you wish to apply for funding to work with us and have identified a suitable scheme, please contact us detailing your interest - we may be able to assist you with applications for funding. We are committed to supporting flexible and part-time working patterns so if you have such requirements, please also get in contact.

Applicants should hold (or expect to gain) a minimum of a 2:1 undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in any health, social science or related disciplines.


Applicants should hold (or expect to gain) a minimum of a 2:1 undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in any health, social science or related disciplines.

How good is research at University of Reading in Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 23.20

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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