Community pharmacists’ perception of asthma: a national survey in Turkey
- 147 Downloads
Suboptimal drug use in asthma patients is a common problem. Meeting the needs of patients and improving communication between healthcare professionals and patients are likely to induce better compliance to treatment. The contribution of community pharmacists, as healthcare professionals, to asthma care is often ignored.
The objective of this study was to assess community pharmacists’ understanding of asthma and to determine the perception of their role in asthma care in Turkey.
Two-hundred and fifty of the 20,133 community pharmacists in Turkey were selected as representing each city, and received questionnaires which, apart from demographic queries, asked for agreement or not with given statements.
Main outcome measure
General knowledge and perception of the pharmacists on their role in asthma management.
174 Pharmacists completed the questionnaire. Although most (66%) were satisfied with their level of knowledge in their specialty, they reported lower levels of knowledge for asthma (52%) and a need for further education (80%). 65% Believed they play a critical role in asthma care, nearly 75% preferred to referent the patient to a physician rather than counsel the patient directly. Delivery of rescue medication without prescription was extensive (91% of pharmacists) and almost half had low expectation of the treatment in terms of disease control. Between 20 and 40% of the pharmacists did not find that they were sufficiently qualified in the handling of inhalers and in inhalation technique.
This national survey provides insight into community pharmacists’ perceptions by emphasizing their belief that they have a vital role in asthma care as both community leader and pharmacist. It also documents the need for further education and training. Improved communication and collaboration between healthcare professionals and pharmacists may contribute to improved asthma care.
KeywordsAsthma Community Pharmacists Knowledge Management Perception
We are indebted to the pharmacists who gave of their time to complete the questionnaires and to Professor Fethi Sahin, Head of the Academy for Pharmacists of the Turkish Pharmacists’ Association, for providing data on pharmacists in Turkey. We are also grateful to Ceylan Denktasci, secretary, for her invaluable assistance.
- 1.http://www.ginaasthma.com Global Initiative for Asthma. Global Burden of Asthma. Accessed March 8, 2005
- 4.Marshik P. Pharmacists and allergists: working together to improve the management of patients with asthma and allergies. J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash DC) 2003;43:439–40.Google Scholar
- 13.Moudgil H, Marshall T, Honeybourne D. Asthma education and quality of life in the community: a randomised controlled study to evaluate the impact on white European and Indian subcontinent ethnic groups from socioeconomically deprived areas in Birmingham, UK. Thorax 2000;55:177–83.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 14.Herborg H, Soendergaard B, Froekjaer B, Fonnesbaek L, Jorgensen T, Hepler CD, et al. Improving drug therapy for patients with asthma–part 1: patient outcomes. J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash) 2001;41:539–50.Google Scholar