Background: Medication counseling is a critical component of pharmaceutical care to promote the safe and effective use of medications and to maximize therapeutic outcomes. The assessment of patients' and pharmacists' satisfaction with medication counseling services could be one of the vital parameters for predicting the quality of pharmacy services. No study has measured and compared both patients' and pharmacists' satisfaction with medication counseling. The objectives of this study were to describe and compare patients' and pharmacists' levels of satisfaction with medication counseling services offered by community pharmacists in South Korea. Methods: This was a descriptive, cross-sectional survey. The online survey was distributed to patients and community pharmacists using a structured questionnaire. The questionnaires consisted of 4 main areas: (1) responders' characteristics (2) current state of medication counseling methods provided by community pharmacies (3) overall satisfaction with medication counseling (4) demand for the development of medication counseling standards. A comparison between patients and pharmacists was made using either a chi-square test or a Fisher's exact test. Results: Between June 13, 2014 and July 15, 2014, a total of 252 patients and 620 pharmacists completed the survey. It was found that 47.3 % of pharmacists and 34.0 % of patients were satisfied with the current medication counseling service. Pharmacists showed a higher degree of satisfaction with the medication counseling service compared to patients (p <0.05). A major reason for patients not being satisfied with the medication counseling from community pharmacists was the insufficient time spent on counseling (51.2 %). The pharmacists' perception of a major barrier to providing appropriate medication counseling for patients was the lack of time (24.3 %). Moreover, a substantial number of patients (88 %) and pharmacists (73 %) supported the development of medication counseling standards to improve community pharmacist counseling services (p < 0.001). Conclusions: This study showed that both patients and pharmacists have low levels of satisfaction with the current medication counseling service offered by community pharmacists. This study provides baseline data for the development of national guidelines for medication counseling by pharmacists.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health Policy