Self-reported attitudes and perceived preparedness to provide pharmaceutical care among final year pharmacy students in Qatar and Kuwait
Keywords:Survey, Pharmacy Students, Pharmaceutical Care, Kuwait, Qatar
Purpose: While pharmaceutical care (PC) had been introduced and taught in schools of pharmacy decades ago, it is still being introduced with different degrees of success in many developing countries around the world. This study aimed to compare the attitudes, perceptions, preparedness, and perceived barriers towards providing PC to patients between final year pharmacy students at Qatar University’s College of Pharmacy (QU-CPH) and Kuwait University’s Faculty of Pharmacy (KU-FoP).
Methods: A pre-tested web-based questionnaire was simultaneously administered to final year pharmacy students in QU-CPH and KU-FoP (n=77) to assess their attitudes towards PC and their perceptions of their preparedness to the service. Students’ opinions about PC education and the barriers to its implementation in practice were also assessed. Descriptive and inferential data analyses were performed using SPSS® version 22. A p-value ≤0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: The response rate was 81.8%. Most pharmacy students (88.7%) agreed that the PC curriculum at their school was sufficient to prepare them for future practice. Students at both universities expressed positive attitudes towards PC practice. They perceived their level of preparedness to practice PC to be higher in the technical, communication and psychosocial aspects as compared to the administrative aspects. Respondents rated the most important barrier to implementing PC practice to be lack of private counselling areas/inappropriate pharmacy layout in Kuwait (76.9%) and organisational barriers in Qatar (66.6%).
Conclusion: PC education provided at QU-CPH and KU-FoP appears to adequately prepare students for their future role. There are opportunities for curricular improvement including enhancing students’ experiential training experience and inclusion of content related to administrative aspects of PC. Efforts should be geared towards overcoming the perceived barriers to PC to ensure broad implementation of PC practice in the Middle East region.
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