Author + information
- T.C.A. Lobban,
- N.E. Breakwell and
- S. Antoniou
The hypothesis of Arrhythmia Alliance was to determine if Community Pharmacists, in multiple countries, could effectively deliver pulse rhythm checks to the public to help identify people with undiagnosed arrhythmias. Global AF Awareness Week is run on an annual basis by Arrhythmia Alliance and its partner organisation, AF Association, during which a ‘Know Your Pulse campaign’ is held in multiple settings where the general public can receive a free manual pulse rhythm check. Settings have included GP surgeries, Hospital reception areas, Community Pharmacy and public places with a high footfall of the general public, such as railway stations and shopping malls. In 2016, this initiative was extended to involve the active collaboration of community pharmacists. The International Pharmacists for Anticoagulation Care Taskforce (iPACT) led the initiative in the pharmacy world. The joint collaboration of Arrhythmia Alliance, AF Association and iPACT was held during Global AF Aware Week (21-27 November 2016).
• To raise awareness of AF and the importance of pulse rhythm checks to the general public across multiple countries
• To engage community pharmacists in Global AF Aware Week and their active participation in delivering manual pulse rhythm checks to identify people with undiagnosed AF and to raise awareness of AF
• To assess the feasibility of pharmacists implementing pulse checks in community pharmacy
Five member countries of iPACT were engaged. Community Pharmacy partners were identified to deliver the campaign. Educational and campaign materials were provided, in local language, by Arrhythmia Alliance, and a template for recording results created together with a patient Primary Care referral template.
1699 pulse checks were undertaken in 56 pharmacies across 5 countries.
77 people had an irregular heart rhythm detected and were referred to their clinical practitioner.
This preliminary collaboration project demonstrated that Community Pharmacists can deliver pulse rhythm checks to the general public to help identify people at risk of AF. The collaboration is expanding the project during Heart Rhythm Week (5-9 June 2017) to community pharmacists in at least twelve countries with a target to deliver pulse rhythm checks to 10,000 people, and to raise awareness of pulse rhythm to more than 1m people.