Making changes to community pharmacies in Italy
Medway School of Pharmacy's academics present results of Randomised Evaluation of Italian Medicines Use Review
Dr Andrea Manfrin and Dr Janet Krska went to Rome on Monday 12th October 2015 to present the final results of the RE I-MUR (Randomised Evaluation of Italian Medicines Use Review) study to an audience of around 80 people in the Senate building. The meeting was organised by the Italian Pharmacists’ Federation (FOFI), which funded the study. Andrea presented the results and Janet put them into an international context.
RE I-MUR represents the first clinical trial conducted in the Italian community pharmacy setting, but it also appears to be the largest conducted in community pharmacy using asthma in the world, involving 15 out of 20 Italian regions. Among the speakers were the President and Vice president of the Italian Pharmacists’ Federation (FOFI), which funded the study, plus a member of the Italian equivalent of the MHRA, a president of an important consumer organisation, and representative of the pharmaceutical industries, all of whom acknowledged the importance of the study.
The main results of the study are that pharmacists’ intervention (the I-MUR, which is based on the English Medicines Use Review provided by community pharmacists) increased the number of patients whose asthma was controlled by 25%, improved adherence to medicines by 38% and reduced the number of medicines regularly used by patients by 8.2%. A clear relationship was found between adherence to medication and asthma control. The economic analysis confirmed that I-MUR is a value for money intervention, with strong potential to provide savings and return on investment for the Italian National Health Service.
The slides from the talk and a summary of the work were made available on a number of websites in Italy and the presentation received excellent media attention. To date, more than 30 pages have been published about the RE I-MUR study in Italy, following a blaze of publicity generated by FOFI, reaching at least 1,722,000 potential readers in Italy. It is likely that this study will result in changes to the way in which community pharmacists work in Italy, as well as their training.