Understanding and perceptions of final-year doctor of pharmacy students about generic medicines in Karachi, Pakistan: A quantitative insight

Shazia Qasim Jamshed, Mohamad Izham Mohamad Ibrahim, Mohamad Azmi Hassali, Adheed Khalid Sharrad, Asrul Akmal Shafie, Zaheer Ud Din Babar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

General objective: To evaluate the understanding and perceptions of generic medicines among final-year Doctor of Pharmacy students in Karachi, Pakistan. 

Methods: A 23-item survey instrument that included a question on the bioequivalence limits and Likert-type scale questions regarding the understanding and perceptions of generic medicines among the students was executed. Cronbach’s alpha was found to be 0.62. 

Results: Responses were obtained from 236 final-year Doctor of Pharmacy students (n=85 from a publicly funded institute; n=151 from a privately funded institute). When comparing a brand-name medicine to a generic medicine, pharmacy students scored poorly on bioequivalence limits. More than 80% of the students incorrectly answered that all the products that are rated as generic equivalents are therapeutically equivalent to each other (P<0.04). Half of the students agreed that a generic medicine is bioequivalent to the brand-name medicine (P<0.001). With regard to quality, effectiveness, and safety, more than 75% of the students disagreed that generic medicines are of inferior quality and are less effective than brand-name medicines (P<0.001). More than 50% of the students disagreed that generic medicines produce more side effects than brand-name medicines (P<0.001). 

Conclusion: The current study identified a positive perception toward generic medicines but also gaps in the understanding of generic medicines. Pharmacy students lacked a thorough understanding of the concepts of bioequivalence. Pharmacy academia should address these issues, which will help build confidence in generic medicines and increase the generic medicine use in Pakistan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-366
Number of pages8
JournalAdvances in Medical Education and Practice
Volume2015
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2015
Externally publishedYes

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