Pharmacy students’ and pharmacists’ perceptions about geriatric pharmacotherapy education


  • Mohd Shahezwan Abd Wahab Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam
  • Noordin Othman Taibah University, Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah
  • Stefan R Kowalski University of South Australia (UNISA), Adelaide
  • Hanis Hanum Zulkifly Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam
  • Aida Azlina Ali Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam
  • Long Chiau Ming University of Tasmania, Hobart
  • Abu Bakar Abdul Majeed Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam


Education, Geriatric pharmacotherapy, Malaysia, Pharmacy students, Pharmacists


Background: An adequate background knowledge base in geriatric pharmacotherapy (GPT) must be attained by pharmacists in order for them to provide optimal care to the elderly.

Objectives: To investigate the perceptions of pharmacy students about the need for competency in GPT, pharmacists’ level of self-perceived confidence in providing GPT, and their opinions about GPT training and education.

Methods: In this cross-sectional study, a questionnaire was distributed to pharmacy students from a public university and pharmacists from four public hospitals in Selangor, Malaysia between May and August 2013.

Results: The response rates were 85.8% (151/176) and 58.9% (128/217) for the pharmacy students and pharmacists respectively. Pharmacy students agreed with the need for GPT competency (mean agreement: 4.64 ± 0.61), but pharmacists’ self-perceived confidence in GPT was moderate (mean agreement: 3.26 ± 0.71). The respondents’ agreement about the adequacy of GPT education received during their undergraduate studies was also modest (pharmacy students, 3.22 ± 0.86; pharmacists, 2.84 ± 0.82; p<0.01). In addition, the respondents welcomed more education in GPT; considered knowledge in common GPT-related topics as important; preferred software to obtain GPT information; and perceived clinical attachment with geriatricians as useful to enhance their GPT knowledge.

Conclusion: Our findings provide a basis to make more GPT education available to both pharmacy students and pharmacists. 

Author Biographies

Mohd Shahezwan Abd Wahab, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam

Department of Pharmacy Practice, Faculty of Pharmacy

Noordin Othman, Taibah University, Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah

Department of Clinical and Hospital Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy

Stefan R Kowalski, University of South Australia (UNISA), Adelaide

School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences

Hanis Hanum Zulkifly, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam

Department of Pharmacy Practice, Faculty of Pharmacy

Aida Azlina Ali, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam

Department of Pharmacology and Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy

Long Chiau Ming, University of Tasmania, Hobart

Unit for Medication Outcomes Research and Education (UMORE), Pharmacy, School of Medicine, Faculty of Health

Abu Bakar Abdul Majeed, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Puncak Alam

Department of Pharmaceutical Life Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy


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Research Article