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ISSN: 2167-1052

Advances in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety
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Research Article

Patients Need a Competent Pharmacist for a Safe and Successful Therapy

Arijana Meštrović1*, Ana Gjergja2, Miljenko Košiček3
1Education Centre and Competency Development, Atlantic FARMACIA, Zagreb, Croatia
2FARMACIA Community pharmacy, Zagreb, Croatia
3PLIVA Croatia Ltd., Global IT – Shared Service Centre, Zagreb, Croatia
*Corresponding Author : Arijana Meštrović
Education Centre Farmacia, Heinzelova 47B
10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Tel: 0038591-6307116
Fax: 003851- 2362858
E-mail: [email protected]
Received December 30, 2011; Accepted February 08, 2012; Published February 14, 2012
Citation: Meštrović A, Gjergja A, Košiček M (2012) Patients Need a Competent Pharmacist for a Safe and Successful Therapy. Adv Pharmacoepidem Drug Safety 1:104. doi:10.4172/2167-1052.1000104
Copyright: © 2012 Mestrovic A et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Purpose : Understanding important facts about medicine therapy is needed to improve patient safety and therapy outcomes. Media advertising of medical products draws the patient’s attention to the importance of reading the patient information leaflet. Despite this, some patients interrupt or change their therapy without prior consultation with a health care professional.
The purpose of this study was to examine if patients read the leaflet, if they understand it, and in case of any doubts, if they consult to a pharmacist or doctor for advice.
Methods : Responses to a patient questionnaire (n=708), designed specifically for this study, were analysed to compare patient attitudes towards medical information. The survey was conducted in 55 pharmacies in Croatia in February 2010.
Results : 95.2% of those surveyed stated that they read the patient leaflet when using a medicinal product for the first time. The meaning of “contraindication” was known to 37.7% patients, and “interaction” to 65.4%. Furthermore, the term “side effects” was understood by 91.8% patients of those surveyed, 74.6% of patients consulted a doctor or pharmacist for advice in case of doubts after reading the leaflet, while 78.2% of patients interrupted or changed their therapy without prior consultation with a health care professional. Conclusion : Informing patients about medicinal products through a leaflet could be insufficient for successful therapy. The patient information leaflet should be easily understandable for the patient. The identification of patient needs for information, education and consultation about proper drug administration is a key pharmacist competency that is still to be developed.

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