Predictors of effective therapeutic relationships between pharmacists and patients with type 2 diabetes: Comparison between Arabic-speaking and Caucasian English-speaking patients

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Background:The benefits of pharmacist-led interventions in achieving desired patient outcomes have been well established. Effective patient–pharmacist relationships are required to provide high-quality pharmacy care. Limited information is available about how Arabic-speaking migrants with diabetes, in Australia, perceive patient-pharmacist relationship and how these perspectives differ from the mainstream society (represented by Caucasian English-speaking people).Objective:To examine and compare the patient–pharmacist relationship, medication underuse and adherence levels among Arabic-speaking and Caucasian English-speaking patients with type 2 diabetes.Methods:A 98-item survey incorporating several previously-validated measurements was completed by Arabic-speaking migrants (ASMs) and Caucasian English-speaking patients (ESPs) with type 2 diabetes. Participants were recruited from various healthcare settings in the Melbourne metropolitan area and rural Victoria, Australia. This survey-based, cross-sectional study was designed to explore patients' perceptions of the patient-pharmacist relationship. A descriptive analysis of responses was undertaken, and binary logistic regression was used to explore patient-pharmacist relationships.Results:A total of 701 participants were recruited; 392 ASMs and 309 ESPs. Of ASMs, 88.3% were non-adherent to their prescribed medication, compared with 45.1% of ESPs. The degree of relationship with community pharmacists differed significantly between ASMs and ESPs. Compared with ASMs, significantly more ESPs reported that they have thought about consulting a pharmacist when they had health problems (P = 0.002). Compared with ESPs, significantly fewer ASMs reported always following pharmacist recommendations (32% versus 61.9% respectively).Conclusions:Arabic-speaking migrants had less-effective relationships with community pharmacists when having their prescriptions filled. Community pharmacists' expertise appeared to be underused. These minimal relationships represent missed opportunities to improve health outcomes.HIGHLIGHTSThe pharmacist-patient relationship is crucial for achieving desired patient outcomes.This study is the first to compare Arabic-speaking migrants and English-speaking patients' viewpoints on the patient-pharmacist relationship.Results show that pharmacist-patient relationship differs significantly between the two groups.Findings yield new insights into the reasons and the consequences of the differences in the relationship with pharmacists.Future initiatives should improve patient-pharmacist communication and engage ethnic minorities with pharmacy services.

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