Medical and pharmacy students’ knowledge, attitude and perception concerning antimicrobial use and resistance in Pakistan


  • Zikria Saleem Universiti Sains Malaysia; University of the Punjab, Pakistan & Rashid Latif College of Pharmacy
  • Mohamed Azmi Hassali Universiti Sains Malaysia
  • Furqan Hashmi Punjab University, Lahore
  • Faiza Azhar Punjab University, Lahore
  • Rabia Mubarak Punjab University, Lahore
  • Aysha Afzaal Punjab University, Lahore
  • Ujalla Munawar Punjab University, Lahore


Antimicrobial Use, Antimicrobial Resistance, Medical Students, Pharmacy Students


Background: Lack of adequate knowledge during undergraduate years may be responsible for prescribing or dispensing inappropriate antimicrobial agents which is one of the main reasons for antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

Objectives: The objective of the present study was to evaluate levels of medical and pharmacy students’ knowledge, attitude and perception concerning antimicrobial use and resistance.

Methods: A cross-sectional observational study was carried out in Lahore, Pakistan. A questionnaire was designed through a literature review. The study population included medical students and pharmacy students of the semi-final year (fourth) and final year (fifth). Data were then collected using a supervised, self-administered and pre-tested questionnaire containing 50 closed-ended questions. Six hundred and fifty students were invited to complete the questionnaire and the response rate was 69.2% (450 students).

Results: The majority of the students (79%) agreed that too many antimicrobial agents were prescribed in the hospitals nationally. The knowledge about antimicrobial use and resistance was significantly higher in pharmacy students than medical students (p<0.05). Pharmacy students were more inclined to strongly agree (94%) that they would like more education on the appropriate use of antimicrobial agents compared to medical students (p=0.001).

Conclusion: In order to reduce the growing problem of AMR, efforts should be undertaken to ensure that future pharmacists and doctors in Pakistan are well educated in practices of rational use of antimicrobial agents and their stewardship.

Author Biographies

Mohamed Azmi Hassali, Universiti Sains Malaysia

School of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Furqan Hashmi, Punjab University, Lahore

University College of Pharmacy

Faiza Azhar, Punjab University, Lahore

University College of Pharmacy

Rabia Mubarak, Punjab University, Lahore

University College of Pharmacy

Aysha Afzaal, Punjab University, Lahore

University College of Pharmacy

Ujalla Munawar, Punjab University, Lahore

University College of Pharmacy


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Research Article