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Background: The ratio of patients to ophthalmologists is rather high, affffording inadequate time for patient interaction, especially on the use of ophthalmic preparations. An assessment of community pharmacists' knowledge and counselling on ophthalmic preparations is vital to maintaining quality of care received by patients.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out among consented community pharmacists practicing in Ibadan metropolis in southwest Nigeria, who were randomized into control and intervention arms. Baseline assessment of their knowledge and counselling on ophthalmic preparations was done. An educational intervention was then carried out among the intervention pharmacists. Postintervention assessment was carried out to evaluate the effffect of the intervention. Data was summarized with descriptive and inferential statistics.
Results: A total of 115 (control arm-62; intervention arm-53) community pharmacists participated in the study. Percentage of community pharmacists who understood punctal occlusion (control vs intervention) increased from 21.0% vs 22.6% at baseline to 45.4% vs 83.0% postintervention. Preintervention (control vs intervention), 83.9% vs 81.1% knew that eye drop bottle tip should not touch the eyes during application. This improved postintervention to 82.3% vs 100%. A signifificant difffference in participants' knowledge and counselling on ophthalmic preparations was observed postintervention. Participants' knowledge comparison (control vs intervention) was 7.79 ± 1.79 vs 7.60 ± 1.65 (p = 0.565) and 8.89 ± 1.73 vs 10.83 ± 1.63 (p < 0.001) at baseline and postintervention, respectively. The counselling comparison (control vs intervention) was 2.82 ± 1.93 vs 2.57 ± 1.91 (p = 0.476) at baseline, and 2.97 ± 2.48 vs 5.98 ± 1.69 (p < 0.001) postintervention.
Conclusion: The educational intervention, which addressed the knowledge and counselling gaps discovered at baseline, improved the community pharmacists' knowledge and counselling on ophthalmic preparations.
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