Current Levels of Interaction between the Physician and Pharmacist: A Comparative Study in Libya and UAE

Abduelmula R. Abduelkarem, Sulieman I. Sharif

Abstract


The aim of the study was to investigate the current levels of interaction between physicians and community pharmacists, and to elicit the opinions and attitudes of physicians about pharmacists’ willingness to perform additional services.
A questionnaire-based interview survey was conducted with a total of 230 doctors practicing in the primary care sector in Libya and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The questionnaire consisted of four sections and covered the frequency of contact between physicians and pharmacists to discuss patients’ drug therapy, the level of physicians’ satisfaction with the services offered by community pharmacists to patients and doctors, physicians’ opinions of the pharmacist performing extra selected services, and the importance of selected counselling activities when the pharmacist dispenses a prescribed medication.
Eighty nine percent (89%; n=100) of doctors in Libya and sixty-six doctors (66%; n=130) in the UAE agreed to participate and completed a questionnaire during the interview. Doctors and community pharmacists included in this study may remain physically isolated from one another in both countries, since almost 70% in Libya and 60% in the UAE either ‘rarely’ or ‘never’ discussed patients’ drug therapy with the pharmacist. Furthermore, it would appear that there is some scepticism about the appropriateness of pharmacists being involved in monitoring blood pressure and providing a therapeutic substitute. Many doctors are also unwilling to delegate some of their traditional roles to pharmacists.
Further work is needed to gauge the level of satisfaction of both patients and doctors with the services provided by community pharmacists. This is principally required to examine the capability of community pharmacists to play a role in the management of chronic diseases in both countries.

Keywords


Libya, UAE, Pharmacist and Physician relationship, Pharmacy-questionnaire survey, Satisfaction and views

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