Patients’ knowledge on oral anticoagulant treatment in Hungary
Background A key element for an effective and safe oral anticoagulant treatment (OAT) is to have the relevant information delivered to patients in an easy-to-understand way and thus have them apply this knowledge in their own therapy. Objective To assess knowledge about OAT, reveal knowledge gaps and identify at-risk patients in terms of limited knowledge about their anticoagulant therapy. Setting Community pharmacies in Hungary. Methods This descriptive cross-sectional study used a structured, validated, self-developed questionnaire to assess patients’ knowledge about OAT. Scores were calculated on each domain and the association between knowledge and patients’ or treatment characteristics were analysed. Responses in all domains were assessed to identify at-risk patients and knowledge gaps. Main outcome measures Knowledge and knowledge gaps on OAT, and risk factors for limited knowledge. Results The questionnaire developed based on four validated questionnaires passed the field test and had a good internal consistency (Cronbach α = 0.795). Our full patient population (N = 427) had a mean percentage score of 59.39 (29.7% good, 41.2% average, 29.0% poor knowledge on OAT). Poor knowledge level was found to significantly correlate with advanced age (> 75 years), lower education, diagnosis of atrial fibrillation, and unawareness of the indication of OAT. The lowest frequency of correct answers regarded the questions on drug interactions (10.2%) and diet (11.4%). Pharmacists were infrequently indicated as the healthcare professionals to share information with regarding OAT (12.7%). Conclusion Findings of our study offer a valuable insight into the required directions of developing new strategies for patient education to improve knowledge on the treatment with oral anticoagulants.
KeywordsHungary Oral anticoagulant therapy Patient education Pharmaceutical care Therapy-related knowledge
The authors are grateful to all participating patients and community pharmacists for their help in the implementation of this study. We thank Dora Bokor (PharmD) for proofreading the manuscript.
The study was supported by the grant ‘Social Renewal Operational Programme’ 6.1.5-14-2015-0004 [Társadalmi Megújulás Operatív Program].
Conflicts of interest
None of the authors have any conflicts of interest to disclose.
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