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Keywords

falls prevention, community pharmacy, medication therapy management, community engagement

Abstract

The objectives of this article are to discuss the process of community engagement experienced to plan and implement a pilot study of a pharmacist-provided MTM intervention focused on reducing the use of medications associated with falling, and to present the research methods that emerged from the community engagement process to evaluate the feasibility, acceptance, and preliminary impact of the intervention. Key lessons learned from the community engagement process also are presented and discussed. The relationship building and planning process took twelve months. The RE-AIM framework broadly guided the planning process since an overarching goal for the community partners was developing a program that could be implemented and sustained in the future. The planning phase focused on identifying research questions that were of most interest to the community partners, the population to study, the capacity of partners to perform activities, and process evaluation. Much of the planning phase was accomplished with face-to-face meetings. After all study processes, study materials, and data collection tools were developed, a focus group of older adults who represented the likely targets of the MTM intervention provided feedback related to the concept and process of the intervention. Nine key lessons were identified from the community engagement process. One key to successful community engagement is partners taking the time to educate each other about experiences, processes, and successes and failures. Additionally, partners must actively listen to each other to better understand barriers and facilitators that likely will impact the planning and implementation processes. Successful community engagement will be important to develop both formative and summative evaluation processes that will help to produce valid evidence about the effectiveness of pharmacists in modifying drug therapy and preventing falls as well as to promote the adoption and implementation of the intervention in other communities.

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