Knowledge, attitudes, perceptions and habits towards antibiotics dispensed without medical prescription: a qualitative study of Spanish pharmacists
Type of content
DeCSfarmacia | grupos focales | conocimientos, actitudes y prácticas sanitarias | investigación cualitativa | farmacorresistencia microbiana | rol profesional | antibacterianos | hábitos
MeSHHabits | Pharmacy | Drug Resistance, Microbial | Professional Role | Qualitative Research | Anti-Bacterial Agents | Focus Groups | Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
OBJECTIVE: To investigate community pharmacists' knowledge, attitudes, perceptions and habits with regard to antibiotic dispensing without medical prescription in Spain. METHODS: A qualitative research using focus group method (FG) in Galicia (north-west Spain). FG sessions were conducted in the presence of a moderator. A topic script was developed to lead the discussions, which were audiorecorded to facilitate data interpretation and transcription. Proceedings were transcribed by an independent researcher and interpreted by two researchers working independently. We used the Grounded Theory approach. SETTING: Community pharmacies in Galicia, region Norwest of Spain. PARTICIPANTS: Thirty pharmacists agreed to participate in the study, and a total of five FG sessions were conducted with 2-11 pharmacists. We sought to ensure a high degree of heterogeneity in the composition of the groups to improve our study's external validity. Pharmacists' participation had no gender or age restrictions, and an effort was made to form FGs with pharmacists who were both owners and non-owners, provided in all cases that they were Official Colleges of Pharmacists-registered community pharmacists. For the purpose of conducting FG discussions, the basic methodological principle of allowing groups to attain their 'own structural identity' was applied. MAIN OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS: Community pharmacists' habits and knowledge with regard to antibiotics and identification of the attitudes and/or factors that influence antibiotic dispensing without medical prescription. RESULTS: Pharmacists attributed the problem of antibiotics dispensed without medical prescription and its relationship to antibiotic resistance to the following attitudes: external responsibility (doctors, dentists and the National Health Service (NHS)); acquiescence; indifference and lack of continuing education. CONCLUSIONS: Despite being a problem, antibiotic dispensing without a medical prescription is still a common practice in community pharmacies in Galicia, Spain. This practice is attributed to acquiescence, indifference and lack of continuing education. The problem of resistance was ascribed to external responsibility, including that of patients, physicians, dentists and the NHS.
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