Drug-Related Problems Identified at Patients' Home: A Prospective Observational Study in a Rural Area of Thailand

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The aim of the study was to examine the prevalence rates, nature, and predictors of drug-related problems (DRPs) experienced in participants living at home in a rural Thailand.


A cross-sectional observational study was undertaken during December 2015 to January 2016. Drug-related problems were identified within a rural township having a population of 5256 by means of home visits by pharmacists. All suspected cases were then assessed for severity and preventability by clinical specialists. Drug-related problems were categorized according to Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe classification (revised 2010).v.6.2


From a systematically recruited cohort of 359 participants, suspected DRPs were identified in 160 participants. After detailed reviews by clinical specialists, 141 cases (39.3%) were deemed to have DRPs. Types of DRPs with prevalence rates were the following: problems of treatment effectiveness (3.7% of DPRs), adverse reactions (15.3%), treatment cost (28.4%), nonadherence to drugs (42.1%), and poor drug storage (10.5%). The most common drug to involve DRPs was those treating cardiovascular disease, especially simvastatin.


Nearly half of community living participants experienced DRPs, especially nonadherence to drugs, and has implications for other rural elderly persons of low education attainment for similar rural economies around the globe. Appropriate interventions should focus on reducing polypharmacy, providing outreach programs, and rigorous pharmacovigilance.

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