Pharmacists are being increasingly employed as part of general practice teams globally, and their input has been associated with several clinical and economic benefits. However, there is a paucity of research focussing on general practitioners' (GPs') perceptions of pharmacist integration into practices in countries where this novel role for pharmacists is yet to become commonplace.
To explore GPs' perceptions of integrating pharmacists into general practices and to identify the behavioural determinants of GPs integrating pharmacists into practices.
Semistructured interviews were conducted with GPs practising in Ireland, who were sampled using a combination of purposive, convenience, and snowball sampling. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim, which then were analysed using conventional content analysis and directed content analysis employing the Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF).
Seventeen GPs were interviewed between November 2021 and February 2022. Seven TDF domains were identified as predominant in influencing GPs' perceptions of pharmacist integration into general practices. These perceptions were mostly positive, especially regarding patient outcomes, cost savings, and improving access to care. However, there were concerns about funding the role, affecting others' workloads, and pharmacists' training needs to work in practices.
This study's theory-informed insight provides a deeper understanding of GPs' perceptions of pharmacists working in general practice and behaviours which can be targeted to help optimize integration. These findings should be utilized in future service development to preempt and address GPs' concerns ahead of pharmacist integration, as well as to inform the development of general practice-based pharmacist roles going forward.