Dispensing Practices in Health Care Facilities of Bahir Dar City, Northwest Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study

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Abstract

Background

Dispensing refers to the process of preparing medicines and distributing to users with provision of adequate information and counseling, in a safe and hygienic manner.

Methods

A cross-sectional study was conducted on 406 clients with respective dispensing encounters from July 20 to August 20, 2013, among health care facilities. Multistage sampling technique was used. Data were collected by interview and observation using a structured questionnaire and a checklist. Logistic regression model was used.

Results

The average number of drugs prescribed per encounter was 1.79; percentage of drugs actually dispensed was 89.1%. The percentage of drugs adequately labeled was 32.2%, percentage of patients who had adequate knowledge on their drugs was 40.5%. The mean consultation and dispensing times were 50 seconds and 6.4 minutes, respectively. The percentage availability of key essential drugs was found to be 73.05%. Regarding the analytic part of the study, client counseling (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 2.63; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.52–4.56), premises (AOR, 8.41; 95% CI, 5.48–9.79), average consultation time (AOR, 2.62; 95% CI, 1.44–4.77), and type of health care facilities (AOR, 3.05; 95% CI, 1.63–5.73) were the statistically significant predictors of dispensing practice.

Conclusion

According to this study, drug dispensing practice based on World Health Organization indicators was not satisfactory. Differences in dispensary premises, counseling, average consultation time, and type of health care facilities were the main predictors of good dispensing practices. There is a strong need to improve dispensary premises, adequacy of labeling on dispensed medicine package, and client counseling on correct dosage schedule to promote good dispensing practices.

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