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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 152-155

Splitting teams at a hospital pharmaceutical care services during COVID-19 pandemic: A tertiary hospital experience in Saudi Arabia

1 Department of Pharmacy Practice, Faculty of Pharmacy, King Abdulaziz University; King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2 King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Hussain T Bakhsh
Faculty of Pharmacy - Males' Section, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 22252
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JMAU.JMAU_57_20

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Background: The cautionary procedures of COVID-19 indicate the importance and urgency of preventing “community transmission” in the overall pandemic control. Pharmacy professionals are considered essential partners in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Hospital pharmacies are expanding services and providing essential services, putting pharmacists and their co-workers at the frontlines for patient care and safety to improve the public health. Objective: The objective was to provide a guidance on minimizing pharmacy staff at risk of COVID-19 exposure and serve as emergency preparedness in case of mass staff infected with COVID-19 pandemic within the department. Setting: This study was conducted at Pharmaceutical Services Administration at King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Methods: An instructional intervention using an electronic survey and summarization of the experience during the COVID 19 outbreak in a hospital pharmacy setting. We analyzed and discussed the methods and strategies that pharmacy settings and pharmacists should use to provide pharmaceutical care during the pandemic crisis. Main Outcome Measure: The outcome measures include staff perception and acceptance for splitting teams at pharmaceutical care services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results: A total of 119 electronic surveys were distributed to the pharmacy staff and responded by 102 pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. All the study participants agreed on two group system which includes working-week-week-off. However, only three participants chose a full-team monthly roster. All participants agreed to be ready for work in their week-off as on demand. Furthermore, they all agreed to strictly follow the preventive measures of wearing masks and physical distancing. Furthermore, they gave permission to the administration to review the working schedule every 2 weeks to either continue the same way or to back to the full-team scheduled monthly roster. Conclusion: During the COVID-19 outbreak, the pharmaceutical services provided valuable pharmacy functions and care considering that we work into two teams and, yet, we are united in one mission and objective. Through these services, pharmacists have presented their professional competence, dedication, and responsibility to patients, other health-care providers, and society.

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