The cardiology training needs of general practice-based pharmacists

Clodagh Clarke*, Sheila Tennant, Nicola Greenlaw, Briegeen Girvin, Paul Forsyth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As the role of the general practice clinical pharmacist (GPCP) evolves, there has been a shift towards patient-facing roles across multiple conditions. This study aimed to measure the self-reported cardiology training needs of GPCPs.

An online survey was developed. Participants were shown a list of statements on cardiac conditions and medication across seven sub-domains. Participants self-reported their knowledge against each statement using a Likert Scale. Participants were considered to require training in that topic where they had ‘disagreed’, ‘strongly disagreed’ or expressed a ‘neutral’ rating in ≥3/7 areas. Participants were shown a list of single statements around cardiology test result knowledge and clinical assessment skills. Respondents who ‘disagreed’, ‘strongly disagreed’ or declared a ‘neutral’ position with the statement were judged to need training in that topic.

Key findings
Seventy-three out of 135 (54%) GPCPs responded. Acute coronary syndrome had the highest training requirement (38/73, 52%) within conditions. Fifty-nine out of 73 (81%) required training on sacubitril/valsartan and 57/73 (78%) with ivabradine. Fifty-four out of 73 (74%) and 44/73 (60%) required training on how to interpret natriuretic peptides and troponin, respectively. Fifty-nine out of 73 (81%), 48/73 (66%) and 55/73 (75%) required training on interpreting ECG, echocardiogram and coronary angiography, respectively. Reduced length of experience in general practice (<2 years) was commonly associated with increased training needs.

There are areas of unmet cardiology training needs within GPCPs that require further support. As the GPCP role evolves, discussion is needed with national pharmacy stakeholders to decide how to incorporate this learning into routine training programmes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-251
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmacy Practice
Issue number3
Early online date19 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


  • cardiology
  • continuing professional development
  • general practice
  • pharmacist
  • primary care


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