Pharmacist-led interventions in GP practices can successfully reduce risk factors for cardiovascular events, a systematic review and meta-analysis published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology (27 November 2019) has suggested
The study looked at 21 randomised controlled trials conducted in seven countries involving 8,933 patients at high risk of a primary cardiovascular event, including those with diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidaemia. Interventions lasted between 3 and 36 months, with the most common types being medication review and medicines management.
Pharmacist-led interventions were associated with a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure, at a mean of 9.33mmHg (95% confidence interval [CI] –13.36 to –5.30) and an average decline in HbA1c of 0.76% (95% CI –1.15 to –0.37), compared with controls. In patients with dyslipidaemia, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol was reduced by an average of 15.19mg/dL (95% CI –24.05 to –6.33).
Some studies included in the review also reported that pharmacist interventions improved medicines adherence and were cost effective.
The authors said the findings supported a greater involvement in GP management of hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidaemia.
“Future work is needed to address the effectiveness of pharmacists’ interventions on non-medical risk factors of cardiovascular disease, such as obesity, smoking and alcohol consumption,” the team concluded.