More often than ever, we are seeing pharmacists become an integral part of a patient’s care team. To provide the best care for a patient, all healthcare professionals must learn how to work together as a team, establishing flawless forms of communication. In other words, doctors and pharmacists must learn to communicate and trust one another.

It’s critical to remember that, at the end of the day, doctors and pharmacists have the same goal – to care for the patient. This means we must set our egos aside and put the patient’s needs first.

Understanding Values

According to a new study by the Centre for Academic Primary Care at the University of Bristol, doctors and pharmacists do their best when they understand the value of the other’s expertise. In other words, when we work together as a team and appreciate the work everyone can bring to the table.

The study found that it is far too easy to see one another as ‘in the way.’ However, by taking the time to get to know everyone on a patient’s care team, it is easier to appreciate the work being done. Likewise, creating a working relationship that puts the patient first is easier. Similarly, this same study found that pharmacists who didn’t have a relationship with the GP (general practitioner) felt undervalued, while those with established relationships felt listened to.

A Supportive Network

Essentially, the relationship between doctors and pharmacists should become a supportive network. Yes, pharmacists and doctors serve as a sort of checks and balances for one another – but that doesn’t need to have a negative connotation. Recall that the end goal is patient care. For example, if a pharmacist happens to catch a dosage mistake made, the doctor doesn’t need to feel offended. Instead, they should be happy that the patient is well cared for. 

It’s important to remember that there are thousands of specialties within the healthcare industry. As such, it is impossible to be the master of everything. This means making solid connections with other experts, such as doctors and pharmacists, is necessary. Together they can offer a more comprehensive understanding, providing the best care possible for patients.