Attitudes and perceptions of Jordanian pharmacy students toward deprescribing: a cross-sectional study

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Shatha M. Al Omari
Hamza Alhamad
Muna Barakat
Hana M. Sawan
Marcia C. Mecca
F. Al Bahar


Deprescribing, Education, Geriatrics, Pharmacy, Polypharmacy, Survey research


Objective: Pharmacists are in a unique position to identify medications that should be deprescribed. Including deprescribing as part of medical and pharmacy curriculum has been proposed as a substantial change to increase the practice of deprescribing. The aims of this study were to evaluate if pharmacy students were exposed to the term of deprescribing in their classes and how they were taught about it (e.g., lecture, case problems, experiential). We also aimed to assess the deprescribing knowledge, attitudes, abilities, and confidence of pharmacy students in Jordan. Methods: An electronic survey was distributed to third- and fourth-year pharmacy students at 12 schools of pharmacy. The survey included three sections, including (i) demographics and questions on their exposure to deprescribing and other experiences within their curriculum; (ii) questions regarding their attitudes, ability, and confidence regarding deprescribing, and (iii) questions to assess the factors that may influence the deprescribing process from the students’ perspectives. Study responses were extracted from Google Form® as an Excel sheet and exported into Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 24.0 (SPSS Inc., Armonk, NY: IBM Corp, USA) for statistical analyses. Descriptive statistics, including frequency and proportions, were calculated and reported appropriately. Results: Around half of the participating students (n=202, 49.5%) were familiar with the term "Deprescribing," and only 74 (18.1%) students reported exposure to deprescribing instruction through required coursework. Less than half (n=193, 47.3%) reported exposure during elective courses, and fewer (n=47, 11.5%) reported exposure in both required and elective courses. Less than half of the students (n=191, 46.8%) were confident to recommend deprescribing strategies for health care providers in patients with potentially inappropriate medications. Conclusion: The results of this study revealed that pharmacy students' attitudes and perceptions about deprescribing were generally positive, however, For didactic and experiential training, pharmacy schools should assess their curricula and consider adding content and assessment of deprescribing knowledge and skills.

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