Pharmacists have become an integral member of the multidisciplinary team providing clinical patient care in various healthcare settings. Although evidence supporting their role in the care of patients with other disease states is well-established, minimal literature has been published evaluating pharmacist interventions in stroke patients. The purpose of this systematic review is to summarize the evidence evaluating the impact of pharmacist interventions on stroke patient outcomes.
: Study abstracts and full-text articles evaluating the impact of a pharmacist intervention on outcomes in patients with an acute stroke/transient ischemic attack (TIA) or a history of an acute stroke/TIA were identified and a qualitative analysis performed.
: A total of 20 abstracts and full-text studies were included. The included studies provided evidence supporting pharmacist interventions in multiple settings, including emergency departments, inpatient, outpatient, and community pharmacy settings. In a significant proportion of the studies, pharmacist care was collaborative with other healthcare professionals. Some of the pharmacist interventions included participation in a stroke response team, assessment for thrombolytic use, medication reconciliation, participation in patient rounds, identification and resolution of drug therapy problems, risk-factor reduction, and patient education. Pharmacist involvement was associated with increased use of evidence-based therapies, medication adherence, risk-factor target achievement, and maintenance of health-related quality of life.
: Available evidence suggests that a variety of pharmacist interventions can have a positive impact on stroke patient outcomes. Pharmacists should be considered an integral member of the stroke patient care team.