Objective: To discuss the provision of pharmaceutical care in community pharmacies in Germany including community pharmacy, organization and delivery of health services, pharmacy education, community pharmacy services, research in community pharmacy, and future plans for community pharmacy services.
Findings: In Germany, cognitive pharmaceutical services have been developed for more than 12 years. Several studies and programs have shown that pharmaceutical care and other pharmaceutical services are feasible in community pharmacy practice and that patients benefit from these services. In 2003, a nationwide contract was established between representatives of the community pharmacy owners and the largest German health insurance fund. In this so-called family pharmacy contract, remuneration of pharmacists for provision of pharmaceutical care services was successfully negotiated for the first time. In 2004, a trilateral integrated care contract was signed that additionally included general practitioners, combining the family pharmacy with the family physician. Within a few months, the vast majority (>17 000) of community pharmacies have registered to participate in this program.
Conclusions: German community pharmacies are moving from the image of mainly supplying drugs toward the provision of cognitive pharmaceutical services.