Pharmacists in Telemedicine: Meeting the Ongoing Demand of Bangladesh

Keywords: telemedicine, pharmacist’s intervention, tele-pharmacy challenges, healthcare situation in Bangladesh, underutilization of hospital pharmacy, pharmacy education, patient communication

Abstract

Background: Currently, coronavirus COVID-19 has affected 210 countries around the world, killed more than 268,500 and infected more than 3.8 million, according to worldometer, May 08, 2020. Home-care is especially important in these situations because hospitals are not seemingly safe during pandemic outbreaks. Also, the chance to get out of the home during the lockdown period is limited. Telemedicine and telehealth technologies are especially effective during epidemic outbreaks, when health authorities recommend implementing social distance systems.Materials and Methods: This study started in February 2020, when the Philippines reported its first death outside China. PubMed, ALTAVISTA, Embase, Scopus, the Science Web and the Cochrane Central Register have been carefully searched. The keywords were used to search out extensively followed journals from various publishers such as Elsevier, Springer, Willey Online Library, and Wolters Kluwer.Results: The idea of employing pharmacists in telemedicine is not only good for general patients’ healthcare access but also utilization of a huge number of pharmacists who are currently unemployed. In this Covid-19 pandemic situation, where vaccine and medicines are literally non-existent, this cheap but effective technology-based support can ensure maximum protection against virus spread and safety.But, Pharmacy education of Bangladesh does not meet the minimum requirement for adequate clinical, hospital and community pharmacy practice. The system needs special attention too.Conclusion: The telemedicine sector in Bangladesh is still in its beginning phase. Employing pharmacists with proper training would bring the best outcome but proper initiatives are not taken. The policy makers are the sole to take any initiatives in the country. Proper lobbing through proper channel is the only solution to establish pharmacists in telemedicine sector.

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Published
2020-05-31