Community Pharmacists' Role in Controlling Bacterial Antibiotic Resistance in Aleppo, Syria

Document Type: Research article

Authors

1 Faculty of Pharmacy, Al Andalus University for Medical Sciences, Tartuas, Syria

2 Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Aleppo University, Aleppo, Syria.

3 Public Health Department, Aleppo University Center for Strategic Studies, Aleppo, Syria.

Abstract

Antibiotic resistance is a major public health concern. This study was conducted to evaluate the knowledge, attitudes of community pharmacists regarding antibiotic use and potential drug resistance besides assessing their behaviors about dispensing antibiotic without prescription and correlation of the outcomes with demographic variables. A cross-sectional survey was conducted on a random sample of 250 pharmacies in Aleppo, using validated self-administered questionnaire. The total scores of the pharmacists' knowledge and attitudes were correlated with participant demographics using Chi-squared test. One-hundered-seventy-three pharmacies out of 250 agreed to participate in the study. The overall prevalence of dispensing antibiotic without prescription was 85.5%. Only 30.8% of participants exhibited good attitude and 37% had adequate knowledge about antibiotic resistance. Good attitude was strongly correlated with age (P = 0.023), years of experience (P = 0.007), socioeconomic location of the pharmacy (P = 0.009) and number of clinics near pharmacy (P = 0.008). The results of this study confirmed that dispensing antibiotic without prescription is a common practice in Aleppo pharmacies despite being unlawful. The half of community pharmacists has a poor attitude and inadequate knowledge with regard to antibiotic resistance, reflecting the need for awareness-raising campaigns directed to community pharmacists to equip them for their main role in the community.
 

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