Stakeholder perspectives on the need for professional education and competence in pharmacovigilance in Zambia: A cross-sectional survey


  • Aubrey Chichonyi Kalungia Department of Pharmacy, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Michelo Banda Department of Pharmacy, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Moses Mukosha Department of Pharmacy, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Michael Chigunta Department of Medical Education Development, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Steward Mudenda Department of Pharmacy, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Sekelani Stanley Banda Department of Medical Education Development, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • James Sichone Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, Strathclyde University, Glasgow, United Kingdom
  • Audrey Hamachila Department of Pharmacy, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Brian Godman Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, Strathclyde University, Glasgow, United Kingdom & School of Pharmacy, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, Ga-Rankuwa, Pretoria, South Africa



Cross-sectional survey, educational needs assessment, Pharmacovigilance, Stakeholder, University, Zambia


Background: Knowledge and skills in pharmacovigilance (PV) are required to mitigate adverse events associated with medicine use which are among the leading causes of morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs. This study explored the local perspectives and needs for PV education in Zambia.

Methods: A mixed-methods study utilising a descriptive cross-sectional survey with an embedded desk review was conducted from November 2021 to December 2022 in Zambia. The quantitative survey used a self-administered questionnaire distributed to 150 participants drawn from key stakeholder groups identified. Qualitative information was extracted from the respective university websites for the desk review.

Results: Out of 150 targeted participants, 144 (96%) responded to the survey. The majority (92.4%) affirmed the need for formal PV education programmes locally. Most (95.8%) perceived that training professionals in PV would add value to strengthening the health system. Furthermore, 45.1% preferred a postgraduate diploma and a master’s degree in PV. About half (48.6%) preferred an interprofessional training approach. Only 6/1207 (0.5%) of the universities in Sub-Saharan Africa offered PV education programmes.

Conclusion: This study underscored the pertinent need for formal PV education programmes and identified the type of education, expected competencies, and suggested educational strategies to guide curriculum development. These findings serve as a starting point for developing programmes to consolidate PV practice in Zambia and beyond.


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How to Cite

Kalungia, A. C., Banda, M., Mukosha, M., Chigunta, M., Mudenda, S., Banda, S. S., Sichone, J., Hamachila, A., & Godman, B. (2024). Stakeholder perspectives on the need for professional education and competence in pharmacovigilance in Zambia: A cross-sectional survey. Pharmacy Education, 24(1), p. 364–381.



Research Article