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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(1), 143; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16010143

Patients’ Anticipation for the Pharmacies of Rural Communities: A Qualitative Study from Pakistan

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Department of Pharmacy Administration and Clinical Pharmacy, School of Pharmacy, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
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The Center for Drug Safety and Policy Research, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
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Global Health Institute, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
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Shaanxi Center for Health Reform and Development Research, Xi’an 710061, China
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Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy and Alternative Medicine, Railway Road Campus, Islamia University, Bahawalpur 63100, Pakistan
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Faculty of Pharmacy, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 66000, Pakistan
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 24 November 2018 / Revised: 23 December 2018 / Accepted: 27 December 2018 / Published: 7 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Health Care Sciences & Services)
Full-Text   |   PDF [335 KB, uploaded 10 January 2019]   |   Review Reports

Abstract

Background: Community pharmacies are an integrated part of healthcare systems worldwide. In low and middle income countries like Pakistan, the paradigm of pharmacy practice is shifting from dispensing medicines to clinical activities. There are disparities in these practices according to location. Pharmacies in urban localities are better than those in rural areas. This qualitative study was conducted to explore patients’ expectations and current practices in rural pharmacies. Methods: A cohort of adult pharmacy visitors (aged > 18 years) that reside in rural community was selected. Consenting participants were recruited by purposive sampling technique until thematic saturation level was achieved. A total of 34 patients were interviewed. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using a semi structured interview guide. All the data were transcribed and used to originate the themes. Results: On analysis, a total of 20 themes were obtained. Sixteen themes pronounced the current provided services. Four themes provided some suggestions for the development of better pharmacies. On call services to provide medicines, limited free extended pharmacy services, interest in patients’ wellbeing, appropriate referral, vaccination, free medical camp, medical services at home, first aid, and counseling were appreciated by patients. Patients stated that medicines are inappropriately stored in unhygienic conditions, prices of medicines are comparatively high, and medicines are substandard. Unavailability of medicines, inept dispensing, limited staffing with poor knowledge, limited working hours, and quackery promotion are challenges in rural pharmacy practice. Patients say that non marginal pricing, informative services, new legislation, and proper vigilance by officials can improve the pharmacy services in rural communities. Conclusions: Patients alleged that rural pharmacies perform deprived practices. To improve service, new legislation and the proper implementation of existing law is needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: qualitative study; patients’ anticipation; community pharmacies; rural population; Pakistan qualitative study; patients’ anticipation; community pharmacies; rural population; Pakistan
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Aziz, M.M.; Jiang, M.; Masood, I.; Chang, J.; Zhu, S.; Raza, M.A.; Ji, W.; Yang, C.; Fang, Y. Patients’ Anticipation for the Pharmacies of Rural Communities: A Qualitative Study from Pakistan. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 143.

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