This article systematically reviews the literature on the impact of collaboration between pharmacists and general practitioners and describes its effect on patients' health. A systematic literature search provided 1041 articles. After first review of title and abstract, 152 articles remained. After review of the full text, 83 articles were included. All included articles are presented according to the following variables: (i) reference; (ii) design and setting of the study; (iii) inclusion criteria for patients; (iv) description of the intervention; (v) whether a patient interview was performed to involve patients' experiences with their medicine-taking behaviour; (vi) outcome; (vii) whether healthcare professionals received additional training; and (viii) whether healthcare professionals received financial reimbursement. Many different interventions are described where pharmacists and general practitioners work together to improve patients' health. Only nine studies reported hard outcomes, such as hospital (re)admissions; however, these studies had different results, not all of which were statistically significant. Randomized controlled trials should be able to describe hard outcomes, but large patient groups will be needed to perform such studies. Patient involvement is important for long-term success.
© 2012 The Authors. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology © 2012 The British Pharmacological Society.