Optimal care in diabetes requires a collaborative and interdisciplinary team of health-care professionals. More often than not, pharmacists are an integral part of this team, using their knowledge of medications, skills and professional judgement to manage the medication needs of patients. Almost 75% of Canadian pharmacists work in a community pharmacy setting, making these health-care professionals highly accessible and often a principal point of contact for patients with diabetes. In this capacity, community pharmacists are well positioned to educate patients and other health care providers on safety, efficacy and potential interactions of medications – including prescribed, over-the-counter and natural health products.
In the December 2017 issue of the Canadian Journal of Diabetes, Diabetes Action Canada co-investigator, Dr. Lori MacCallum acted as a guest editor on this issue focusing on pharmacy practice and the evolving role of pharmacists in diabetes care. Furthermore, in this issue Dr. MacCallum explores the pharmacist perspective on the use of decision aids in managing type 2 diabetes in community pharmacies and the creation of a Canadian Diabetes Pharmacists Network to support and empower pharmacists through networking, education and knowledge translation initiatives. The evidence provided in this issue promotes an integrated care strategy with a more active role of pharmacist in the diabetes care team.