Hospital pharmacists’ roles and attitudes in providing information on the safety of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in Thailand
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Background Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are widely used for patients to manage pain and inflammation, especially in older adults. Failure to cope with some adverse drug reactions (ADRs) of NSAIDs could lead to more serious symptoms, therefore, providing useful information about medicine is an important step in protecting patients from developing serious ADRs. The pharmacy service should be a frequent source of medicine information for patients, however in Thailand, little is known about pharmacists’ provision of safety information to patients for management and prevention of these ADRs. Objective Aims of this study were to determine Thai hospital pharmacists’ roles in providing drug safety information and to assess their attitudes towards the importance of giving drug safety education to patients. Setting All government hospitals in north-eastern Thailand. Methods This study was a cross-sectional survey. A total of 761 pharmacists in 287 hospitals in north-eastern Thailand were selected by stratified random sampling. Self-administered questionnaires were sent by post, with two reminders. Main outcome measures Proportion of hospital pharmacists providing ADR information on NSAIDs to patients, factors affecting this provision, and pharmacist attitudes towards drug safety education for patients. Results The response rate was 54.8 % (N = 417), the majority of respondents worked in community hospitals (57.2 %). A total of 347 pharmacists (83.6 %) had informed patients about ADRs, although less than half had informed patients about ADR monitoring and management (36.6 % and 44.1 % respectively). The proportion of time spent in direct patient contact, type of hospital, and other routine work were associated with the frequency of drug safety information provision. Pharmacists had moderately good attitudinal scores towards drug safety education (62.2 ± 5.4), with significantly higher scores found in those who provided most ADR information to patients (60.3 ± 5.2 vs. 62.6 ± 5.4, P = 0.002). The majority (82.2 %) agreed that patient information leaflets should be provided. Conclusions Thai hospital pharmacists’ provision of ADR information for NSAIDs may occur less frequently than is desirable. However, their positive attitude towards provision of ADR information suggests that drug safety education by pharmacists should be routinely provided to patients, particularly patients at high risk of NSAID use.
KeywordsADRs-Adverse drug reactions Drug information Drug safety Hospital pharmacists Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs NSAIDs Thailand
The authors would like to thank all hospital pharmacists who voluntarily participated in this study. In addition, we would like to thank Assist. Prof. Sermsak Sumanont for the support in this research project.
This work received financial support from Khon Kaen University Integrate Multidisciplinary Research Cluster (Grant Number MIH-2554-Ph.D-07) and the Graduate School of Khon Kaen University (Grant Number 55222103).
Conflicts of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest in relation to this work.
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