International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy

, Volume 40, Issue 5, pp 1317–1327 | Cite as

PharmAdhere: training German community pharmacists with Objective Structured Clinical Examinations

  • Anna LavenEmail author
  • Maira Anna Deters
  • Olaf Rose
  • Holger Schwender
  • Alexandra Smaranda
  • Isabell Waltering
  • Stephanie Laeer
Research Article


Background Pharmacists who engage in Pharmaceutical Care need skills to optimise responsible medication use and increase medication adherence. Objectives We developed and evaluated a blended-learning programme for German community pharmacists that focused on conducting consultations in chronic diseases. Setting Community pharmacists in Germany. Method Interventional study with pre-post design. We combined e-learning with Objective Standardised Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) for emergency situations, initiation/implementation of medication therapy and detection of symptoms of four chronic diseases. Specific procedures were defined in the Pharmaceutical Action Plan. Skills were measured with a global analytical marking sheet derived from the Medication Related Consultation Framework and scored with the Canadian criticality/relevancy matrix. Time limits matched real practice scenarios. Main outcome measures Changes in knowledge (difference of test results before and after e-learning) and changes in skills (difference in scores of the OSCEs before and after training). Results 22 out of the 26 pharmacists enrolled, completed the study. The number of correctly answered questions increased significantly after the e-learning for all four indications with a mean number of additional correct answers between 3.86 and 4.9 points out of 15 (p < 0.001). The sums of the analytical checklist points in percentages increased significantly in all topics from the baseline summative OSCE to the final summative OSCE between 6.14 and 31.85% (p < 0.001). The maximum duration of consultation per patient was less than 10 min in all OSCEs. Conclusion The use of e-learning and OSCEs was well received by participants and is a successful method to deliver practical Pharmaceutical Care training.


Adherence Blended learning Community pharmacy services Continuing education Counseling Education Germany Pharmaceutical care Pharmacy 



The authors thank Zubin Austin for his support in furthering the understanding of OSCEs, Gerald Friderich for the verification of the Pharmaceutical Action Plan according to DIN EN ISO standard, Ian Millar and John Bradshaw for language edit, Julia Schaefer and the observers for their support in conducting the summative OSCEs.

Conflicts of interest

DM, SH, SA and LS declare that they have no conflict of interest. LA is the owner and CEO of Pharmabrain. RO has received lecture fees and reimbursement of conference fees and travel expenses by Bayer AG, Boehringer Ingelheim, Medac, MSD and Omnicell. WI has received lecture fees and reimbursement of conference fees and travel expenses by Medac, MSD and HRS Pharma. Face-to-face training took part in the training pharmacy of Bayer’s Innovation Academy of German Pharmacists.


This study was partially paid by the course-participants and partially by Pharmabrain, Berlin.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 51 kb)
11096_2018_710_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (151 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (PDF 154 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Clinical Pharmacy and PharmacotherapyHeinrich-Heine-UniversityDuesseldorfGermany
  2. 2.College of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmacotherapy and Translational ResearchUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  3. 3.Mathematical InstituteHeinrich-Heine-UniversityDuesseldorfGermany
  4. 4.Servicio de Anestesiología y ReanimaciónHospital Central de la Cruz RojaMadridSpain
  5. 5.Institute of Pharmaceutical and Medicinal ChemistryWestfaelische Wilhelms-UniversityMuensterGermany

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