Abstract
A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW OF PERCEPTIONS AND KNOWLEDGE OF PHARMACISTS REGARDING USE OF COMPLEMENTARY AND ALTERNATIVE OF MEDICINES IN MANAGEMENT OF DIFFERENT CHRONIC DISEASES.

Azhar Hussain, Madeeha Malik* and Sana Kanwal

ABSTRACT

Evidence suggests that health care professionals mainly pharmacists are not equipped with sufficient knowledge and training regarding safety and efficacy aspects of complementary and alternative medicines (CAM). Most of the pharmacists possess poor knowledge regarding adverse effects and interactions of herbal remedies. The aim of this review paper is to summarize research findings regarding perceptions and knowledge of pharmacists about CAM in terms of factors responsible for lack of knowledge, barriers in promoting CAM, and prevalence of CAM use in different diseases, in both developed and developing countries including Pakistan. A total of 54 studies were reviewed out of which 45 were from developed and developing countries and 9 from Pakistan. It was concluded that extensive research has been conducted in developed countries regarding perceptions, knowledge, attitude and practice of health care professionals including pharmacists regarding CAM use. On the other hand, in developing countries including Pakistan limited studies have been conducted in this regard. Extensive research is required to assess perceptions, knowledge and practice of health care professionals regarding CAM. Impact of training programs regarding safe and effective use of CAM should also be assessed. Collaborative models of health care system which demands effective communication between allopathic and CAM practitioners for promoting rational use of CAM must be designed and implemented.

Keywords: Complementary and alternative medicines, Knowledge, Perceptions, Pharmacists, Barriers, Factors.


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