Hospital pharmacists’ awareness and perspective toward the management of COVID-19 pandemic in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

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Hospital pharmacists, COVID-19, Cross-sectional


Objectives: This study investigates the hospital pharmacists’ awareness of important facts about the COVID-19 disease and their source of information, as well as their perception. Methods: This cross-sectional study using a self-administered questionnaire was conducted from November 2020 to March 2021 in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). The questionnaire was developed via electronic platform and invitations were sent to pharmacists working in private and government hospitals. A multivariate logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with awareness of COVID-19. Results: A total of 272 pharmacists submitted their responses via weblink. Many pharmacists (n=228, 84%) followed the latest COVID-19 updates on treatment and updated their information mainly through World Health Organization documents (n=151, 56%). Pharmacists working in secondary and tertiary hospitals were relatively five-times times (AOR = 4.59; 95% CI: 1.69–12.8; p-value = 0.003) and three-times (AOR = 2.93; 95% CI: 1.35–6.72; p-value = 0.008) more aware of COVID-19 than those working in primary hospitals. Pharmacists with prior adequate knowledge regarding epidemics and pandemics were twotimes more likely to have a good awareness of COVID-19 compared to those who had received none (AOR = 2.15; 95% CI: 1.09–4.35; p-value = 0.030). Conclusions: Half of the pharmacists believed that they received required education in the past about epidemics and pandemics, and many follow the recent COVID-19 updates on medicines predominantly from the WHO followed by the government awareness campaigns. Many pharmacists believed they have a key role in the management of epidemics/pandemics via their hospital pharmacy. However, this study identified certain awareness gaps regarding COVID-19, highlighting areas of improvement

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