A study of the information seeking behaviour of hospital pharmacists: empirical evidence from Greece

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Abstract

Background:

Hospital pharmacists need access to high-quality information in order to constantly update their knowledge and improve their skills. In their modern role, they are expected to address three types of challenges: scientific, organizational and administrative, thus having an increased need for adequate information and library services.

Objectives:

This study investigates the information-seeking behaviour of public hospital pharmacists providing evidence from Greece that could be used to encourage the development of effective information hospital services and study the links between the information seeking behaviour of hospital pharmacists and their modern scientific and professional role.

Method:

An empirical research was conducted between January and February 2010 with the development and distribution of a structured questionnaire. The questionnaire was filled in and returned by 88 public hospital pharmacists from a total of 286 working in all Greek public hospitals, providing a response rate of 31%.

Results:

The hospital pharmacists in Greece are in search of scientific information and, more particularly, pharmaceutical information (e.g., drug indications, storage, dosage and prices). The Internet and the National Organization of Medicines are their main information sources, while the lack of time and organized information are the main obstacles they have to face when seeking information.

Conclusions:

The modern professional role of hospital pharmacists as invaluable contributors to efficient and safer healthcare services may be further supported through the development of specialized libraries and information services within Greek public hospitals.

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