To evaluate the new emerging role of community pharmacist and the challenges they are facing among the profession and public. A qualitative study approach was adopted in three different cities of Pakistan for a period of four months; a questionnaire based interview guide was developed after extensively reviewing the literature and utilized to collect the data. The respondents were community pharmacists and all the interviews were conducted at the work places and a written consent was obtained from participants prior to the interview. The volunteered respondents were 16 community pharmacists among them ten were male and six were female and they were aged between 25 and 45 years and all of them were actively involved in dispensing and their average frequency of dispensing the prescriptions were 40 to 50 per day. After thematic content analysis of data 5 major themes were obtained: (1) Poor literacy rate in rural patients; (2) Lack of effective patient counseling; (3) Lack of practical training and coaching of pharmacist; (4) Centralized drug reporting system; (5) Potential opportunities. There is a lack of awareness among the other health care professionals and public in regard to the new emerging role of community pharmacists in Pakistan, there is a greater need to reduce the communication gap between the physicians and pharmacists in regard to drug information sharing which will ultimately improve the quality of life of patient. Pharmacists need to focus more on provision of quality pharmaceutical care services rather than focusing on management of their outfits.
Key words: Community pharmacist, respondents, prescription, pharmaceutical care, qualitative study.
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