Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe

The Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe (PCNE) was established in 1994  and it became an official association (under Dutch law) in 2004.
Pharmaceutical Care is the pharmacist's contribution to the care of individuals, in order to optimize medicines use and improve health outcomes.

Conferences Working groups

New newsletter 2020-1

The first newsletter of 2020 can be found here. It features new chairperson's editorial, outcomes of the Expert Courses and Workshops that were held at the Working Symposium in Egmond, presentations of new board members and other PCNE related news. Give it a read!



VOLUME 15 I NUMBER 1                                              March 2020
Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe

Chairperson's editorial

Dear friends,

At these challenging times for all of us as professionals, researchers and individuals, it is my pleasure to address you all on behalf of the new PCNE Board, after a very successful conference in Egmond last February.

My first words go out to all of you contributing to the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak, to thank you for your work in ensuring continuity of care for all affected. Also, to all of you who keep advancing pharmaceutical care for the benefit of the patient and the healthcare system, adapting your work and research processes to cope with a new, albeit transient, reality.

My following thanks go to the previous PCNE Chairperson, Martina Teichert, and PCNE Secretary, Jacqueline Hugtenburg, for the fabulous work done in the past two years, which culminated in a very successful Working Symposium. We are lucky to have them serve an additional 2 years in the Board, in which we will continue to benefit from their enthusiasm and commitment.

I am sure you will also join me in thanking Mitja Kos and Nejc Horvat as outgoing PCNE Board members, for their invaluable contribution over the 6 years they were part of the leadership structure. We will miss their insights, inspiration and energy, but we are sure they will continue to contribute to PCNE's mission and vision in other roles. 

We now welcome two new members to the Board, Bjarke Abrahamsen and Susanne Kaae, whom you will get to know a little bit better in this newsletter, but also in the coming years. We count on them to bring new perspectives on our work, matched with new solutions based on their expertise.

Together with Isabelle Arnet as the new PCNE Secretary, our intention is to advance the various work streams within PCNE, and increase our outreach and network to have an impact on how pharmaceutical care is designed, regulated and enacted in different countries.

And, we very much count on YOU to achieve this. 

In this issue, we invite you to reflect back or get to know more about the outcomes of the different Expert Courses and Workshops that were held in Egmond, whilst we are already busy preparing the next PCNE Working Conference to be held in Basel, Switzerland. Mark your calendars for the 3-6 February 2021.

Basel in 2021, here we come! 

Meanwhile, please continue reading for more PCNE news and projects!

Ema Paulino, PCNE Chairperson


Right questions, valid answers
7th PCNE Working Symposium 2020
Egmond aan Zee, the Netherlands, 7-8 February 2020

This year we focused on ‘Right questions, valid answers’ as an overarching topic, through plenary lectures, three pre-conference Expert Courses and four Workshops. Seventy-seven participants from 19 countries participated in the programme, of which we bring some highlights.

Expert Courses

Right questions, valid answers: A broad introduction to qualitative research

This Expert Class took the participants through the basics of the following qualitative methods: Interviews, the Delphi-technique, Nominal group techniques and Observations. The participants carried out small exercises to get a better notion of conducting qualitative methods and had a lively exchange of their experiences with the lecturers. Depending on the wishes of PCNE members more workshops could be planned in the future concerning particular aspects of using qualitative methods in pharmaceutical care (e.g. topic of ‘data saturation’).

Presenting and reporting my valid answers, how to write a scientific article

This Course was structured in a balanced manner with a theory-based content, various exercises and also some room for discussion amongst the participants. It covered topics including the essence of research, the structure of a manuscript, reasons for papers to get rejected, impact factors and predatory publishing, to name a few.

Right questions, valid answers in developing questionnaires

During the last PCNE conferences, discussions often arose about outcomes and goals to achieve in research projects, crystalizing a need to look closer at the instruments used in pharmacy practice research. Questionnaires are widely used because asking questions is well accepted, relatively cheap and seems simple. However, experience shows that it is not simple at all and that many pitfalls exist. This workshop aimed at understanding what needs to be considered in order to construct “right” questions that deliver valid answers. Participants discussed what happens on the respondent’s side during the question-answer process, looked at the different types of questions and their advantages and disadvantages as well as the question wording, response and scaling options. The right way to string questions to obtain a questionnaire was also discussed, keeping in mind that the question order has an effect and how to deal with them. Practical issues and common pitfalls were debated such as asking sensitive questions, scale effects, the use a middle category or a “don’t know” option in scales, and the position of sociodemographic questions in a questionnaire. In the end, participants agreed that developing questions and questionnaires represents a challenging topic and that it is impossible to construct a perfect questionnaire. Nevertheless, questionnaires are not only valuable but needed in order to develop valid tools for pharmacy research.

Posters and Oral Communications

We received 55 abstracts in total, of which 4 were rejected . This resulted in 43 posters and 8 oral communications being presented at the conference.

During the 7th Working Symposium 2020, poster presentations were organised in four groups. The best presenters competed for the Poster Presentation award, sponsored by the Dutch Pharmacists' Association KNMP, which was won by Urska Makovec from Slovenia, with her poster on 'Medicines Use Review impact on drug related problems in Slovenia'.

The Oral Communication Award, sponsored by the ABDA Förderinitiative Pharmazeutische Betreuung, was won by Carina Lundby from Denmark, with her presentation on the use of medication among nursing home residents.

Both awards were € 500.00 and included this year a printed copy of the Pharmacist Guide to Implementing Pharmaceutical Care.


Highlights from the PCNE General Assembly

Elections for the Board

The 2020 PCNE General Assembly ratified the election of 2 new Board Members (see below).

Working group Guidelines and Indicators now official

During the 2020 PCNE General Assembly, the working group on Guidelines and Indicators was officially established. Although this working group has been active for some time already, it still needed apoproval according to the PCNE Regulations.

The leaders of this working group are Martina Teichert (the Netherlands) and Kenji Fujita (Australia). The working group can be contacted through the PCNE secretariat.

New members

Dr. Maria Teresa Herdeiro, from the University of Avero, Portugal, was accepted as a new individual member of PCNE.

Dr. Anna Laven, who was originally representing the University of Düsseldorf, was now accepted as individual member of PCNE. The Division of Phamacy and Ophtometry of the University of Manchester was accepted as institutional member. Prof. Mary Tully, who was individual member, now became the representative of this department.

Honorary members

In Egmond aan Zee, the following members were awarded the honorary membership:

  • Dr. Ines Krass, Australia
  • Prof. Dr. Kurt Hersberger, Switzerland
  • Dr. Marleen Haems, Belgium,
  • Prof. Dr. Mary Tully, United Kingdom

The laudatios were delivered by Martin Henman, who did an excellent job, as usual!

Meet Bjarke Abrahamsen, new PCNE Board member
Bjarke Abrahamsen was born in 1974. He graduated with a MSc in Pharmacy in 2002 and continued his work as a PhD student at University College London with focus on molecular mechanisms of pain. After obtaining his PhD in 2008, he continued as a post.doc at University of Copenhagen investigating molecular modulation of glutamate transporters. In 2012, Bjarke decided to change his academic career and get back to working closer with the patient and how to support the patient in the most optimal way. To do so, he started part-time work in a community pharmacy and combined his work with studies to become a dietician. In 2014 he obtained his BSc as a registered dietician and took up a position as clinical pharmacist at the Hospital Pharmacy, Hillerød Hospital. At the hospital Bjarke was partly associated with providing pharmacy services at different wards and partly conducting medication reviews at the department of accident and emergency. In 2015 he started his current position as a research and development consultant at Pharmakon, The Danish College of Pharmacy Practice. At Pharmakon, Bjarke work with many different aspects of pharmacy practice such as Medication Review, Health Literacy, Drug Related Problems, Rational Pharmacotherapy as well as smaller projects monitoring international aspects of pharmacy practice. The research and development at Pharmakon often work in close collaboration with pharmacies in Denmark Danish pharmacies generating very practice-related results. Pharmakon holds a PCNE institutional membership and have since the foundation of PCNE played an active role in the development of the Network. Bjarke has since 2016 attended all PCNE conferences and he enjoy the informal exchange of knowledge and the easy access to the enormous amount of knowledge within the network. He hope as part of the board to facilitate workshops where pharmacies collaborate with other healthcare professionals and to increase the involvement members through more direct communication. 
Meet Susanne Kaes, new PCNE Board member
Susanne Kaae was born in 1971 in Hillerød, Denmark and graduated as a pharmacist from the Royal Danish School of Pharmacy in 1996. She worked in community pharmacy for around six years before becoming a PhD student in Social Pharmacy to investigate the implementation of cognitive services in community pharmacy. The methods of the PhD were based on qualitative methods mainly field observations and interviews, and have stayed the preferred choice of methods ever since. 
Today Susanne is an Associate Professor at the Social and Clinical Pharmacy Research Group at the University of Copenhagen and (co-) Head of the WHO Collaborating Center for Research and Training in the Patient Perspective on Medicines Use. She is still engaged in Pharmacy Practice and Pharmaceutical Policy being currently involved in projects aiming at improving patient communication in community pharmacies, investigating risk communication processes (direct to health care professionals communication), exploring appropriate use of antibiotics in South-East Europe as well as future implementation of 3D printed medicines in society. 
As part of the Social Pharmacy Research Group at the University of Copenhagen, Susanne has an institutional PCNE membership and joined her first PCNE conference in Gothenburg in 2007. She has participated in several PCNE conferences since then including being a workshop responsible. She finds the PCNE an important forum for pharmacy practice researchers to exchange, discuss and develop, and likewise a good platform for quick and easy dissemination of information. Based on her special research experience, she would like to support introducing more PCNE lectures and workshops based on aspects and challenges related to carrying out qualitative methods in pharmaceutical care, and as part of this to advocate for more research in the patient perspective on medicines use. 


UPPER is a practice research network of the University of Utrecht, and they also have a regular newsletter. In the last UPPER Newsletter there was a brief report of the latest PCNE Egmond Symposium. The authors recommend our conferences as practice oriented for pharmacy, and the themes as recognizable also for practicing pharmacists. It is interesting to take a closer look at these practical problems. Why is it so difficult to improve adherence to therapy or actually implement those interventions from the medication assessment? We are glad that UPPER recognises our conferences as valuable!


The backend of the PCNE website has recently been changed again. A password protected area has been created for conference visitors. In the past, we provided them with a USB key but now the documentation for workshops and courses can be uploaded there. Such content is only accessible for conference visitors who have registered and paid their fee. The content is, of course, also accessible for all members and observers. A number of such items have already been added to the workshop descriptions of the 2020 symposium.


Newly adopted Council of Europe resolution will promote pharmaceutical care in Europe​

On 11th March 2020, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted a new resolution on the implementation of pharmaceutical care for the benefit of patients and health services. The resolution provides a framework for the implementation of pharmaceutical care in daily practice with a view to promoting patient-centred care and advancing the appropriate and safe use of medication in community and hospital pharmacy settings.

The European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines & HealthCare (EDQM - Council of Europe), which coordinated this work, has published a press release on this newly adopted resolution, available here.


Final call for Applications for Social and Administrative Pharmacy Section (SAPS) Research Award
 Applications CLOSE 1 April 2020
The FIP SAPS Research Award is established to fund new research initiatives.  Projects should be relevant to SAPS or to FIP more broadly. 

SAPS is offering a €1,500 award to cover costs for the selected project.

The uniting interest for SAPS is the organisation of pharmacy practice and the provision of evidence for decision-making in all areas related to pharmacy policy and advocacy.It is expected that the project would be suitable for presentation either via a poster or short oral presentation at a future FIP congress.  

Applicants must be members in good standing of the SAPS Section of FIP. 
Please find the application form here.

 This form is required to be completed AND submitted prior to 1 April 2020 at
Visit Our Website
Please contact if you have any questions about this newsletter. 

Copyright © 2020 Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe, All rights reserved.