Maria Teresa Herdeiro
University of Aveiro , Portugal
Maria Teresa Herdeiro is a Pharmacist, with European Ph.D. in Public Health (University of Santiago de Compostela) and Master in Food Sciences and Engineering. Is Specialist in Regulatory Affairs (College of Pharmacists). Is Professor Coordinator and Assistant Professor in CESPU, and Invited Assistant Professor in University of Aveiro. Is Scientific Consultant in the North Pharmacovigilance Unit, Medicine Faculty of Oporto. Has received the award of Scientific Research Professora Doutora Maria Odette Santos-Ferreira, with the project "Pharmacists' role in the Portuguese Pharmacovigilance System". Has several papers published about Pharmacovigilance, in journals as JAMA, Drug Saf., Int J Antimicrob Agents, Int J Clin Pharm. Has a Post-Doctoral fellowship from Fundação Ciênciae Tecnologia (FCT) and is a Principal Investigator in an FCT financed project
Some studies identifi ed self-medication and antibiotic dispensing without prescription as a link in the chain of antibiotic resistances, an important public health issue. It is essential to identify pharmacists' attitudes about antibiotic resistances and antibiotic dispensing process to develop tailored interventions. It was conducted a study in the Centre Regional Health Administration (ARS-C), Portugal, to identify pharmacists attitudes relating to microbial resistances and antibiotic use. Pharmacists' attitudes were identified through a questionnaire application. Questionnaire was developed based on focus groups, was evaluated by an expert panel and validated through a pilot-study conducted outside intervention area. Questionnaire was sent to 1197 pharmacists working in ARS-C, with a pre-paid and pre-filled response envelope. Response rate was near 65%. Were identified 3 attitudes that could influence propensity of dispensing antibiotics without prescription: complacence (highest odds ratio), responsibility of others (attributed to patients/health system) and fear/precaution. Considering attitudes underlying antibiotics misuse was designed an educational intervention that includes: 1. Interactive Educational PowerPoint presentation (IEP); 2. printed educational materials (reminders and posters); 3. selected articles referenced during IEP. IEP comprises: a. introduction to antibiotic resistance and the problem of antibiotics misuse; b. presentation of attitudes identified, underlying antibiotic dispensing behavior; c. strategies to improve antibiotic use. It is focused to improve communication skills between pharmacists and patients, promoting therapeutic adherence, diminishing inappropriate use of antibiotics. Results allow understanding pharmacists attitudes that might influence antibiotic dispensing process and design tailored interventions to improve antibiotic use, to be more accepted by pharmacists and improve pharmacists' practices.