The Effectiveness of Pharmacist-Based Coaching in Improving Breast Cancer-Related Health Behaviors: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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Keywords

Pharmacist-based health coaching, Healthcare services Health coaching, Women health

Abstract

Background: Although pharmacists are trusted and easily accessible by the public, their role in changing health behaviours related to breast cancer has been rarely investigated. Objective: To investigate the effectiveness of pharmacist-based coaching in improving BC-related health behaviors and knowledge in females, and to measure the comfort level toward this program. Methods: This was a randomized controlled study carried out in community pharmacies in Egypt. Pharmacies included were asked to enroll 240 females into a trial, then equally allocate them into either active or control arms, and provide 12 weekly face-to-face coaching sessions to those assigned to the active arm. Pharmacists were also asked to survey females and fill a standardized data collection form at baseline, in the middle of coaching, at the end of coaching, and three months after coaching. Results: The proportions of doing high physical activity, practicing healthy diet, and practicing breast self-exam three months after the end of coaching programme across the active and control arms were 52.17% versus 17.09% (p=0.002), 62.60% versus 28.20% (p=0.003), and 81.73% versus 23.07% (p=0.005), respectively. The mean scores of knowledge on BC symptoms, risk factors, and detection methods three months after coaching across the active and control arms were 4.10±2.47 versus 2.72±1.19 (p=0.038), 4.25±2.20 versus 3.28±1.48 (p=0.020), and .34±1.80 versus 1.72±0.68 (p=0.001) respectively. While most of the females participated in the active arm were comfortable toward the financial 94.78% and social 88.69% sides of the program, more than one-third (34.78%) of the participants were uncomfortable toward the competency of coaches. Conclusion: Despite the need for some modifications, BC-related health behaviors and knowledge can be improved through pharmacist-based health coaching.

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