Do Health Professionals have Positive Perception Towards Consumer Reporting of Adverse Drug Reactions? 2181-2185
Dr. Mohammed Ahmed AL-Shakka,
PhD Candidate, Discipline of Social & Administrative Pharmacy School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, USM
11800, Minden,Penang, Malaysia.
Phone: 006-017-4034332, Eâ€“mail:email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the perceptions of general practitioners (GPs) and community pharmacists (CPs) in Penang, Malaysia, towards consumer reporting of Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs).
Methodology: A cross-sectional mail survey was adopted for the performance of the study. Survey questionnaires were sent to 192 CPs and 400 GPs in the state of Penang, Malaysia. Reminders were sent to all the non-respondents after 3 weeks of the initial mailing. Data which were collected from the questionnaires were analyzed by using the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS), version 15. The Chi-square test was used to determine as to whether there was any significant difference between expected and observed frequencies at the alpha level of 0.05.
Results: Only 104 respondents (47 CPs and 57 GPs) returned the survey, with a response rate of 18.0%- a figure which could be considered to be low. This study indicated that GPs and CPs were aware about the importance and benefits of consumer reporting. A majority of them (88.0%) thought that consumer reporting would add more benefits to the existing pharmacovigilance program. Similarly, 97% of the respondents agreed that reporting of ADRs was necessary and 87.0% respondents had seen ADRs among their patients. However, 57 of them (6.0%), had not been aware that the national program in Malaysia allowed consumers to report ADRs. A majority of them (97.0%) agreed that consumers needed more education regarding ADR reporting. Most of them (84.0%) thought that consumers could not write valid reports which were similar to reports which were made by healthcare professionals (HCPs). A majority of the respondents (68.0%) had not heard about the consumer reporting program in Malaysia and half of them did not believe that consumer reporting could overcome under-reporting, which was the main problem of the national pharmacovigilance program in Malaysia.
Conclusion: The GPs and CPs were aware about the importance and benefits of consumer reporting. Such reporting will add more benefits to the existing programmes in Malaysia, although the barrier that we are facing now is the doubt that they hold over patientsâ€™ ability to write valid reports which are similar to reports which are made by healthcare professionals (HCPs). Therefore, the consumers need to be educated more about their medications, on how to validate any complaints that they had about the drug consumption and on how to file a proper report and channel it to the â€˜rightâ€™ person or bodies. Equally importantly, the media and the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) should play an important role in determining the success of consumer reporting.