Medicines and the body: what is it consumers think and know about medicines - the impact of field information.

Luis Miguel Santiago, Salvador Massano Cardoso


There is poor knowledge about how medicines act in the body. Information made by defined rules, can improve such bad knowledge. In a primary care setting, the result of an intervention campaign by written and audiovisual techniques about pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and about how medicines work in the body, was assessed through a validated questionnaire for self fulfilment, in anonymity, to be returned by mail, three weeks after the end of the information period, in April 2008. A non-probabilistic population was studied and results compared to the ones previous to the intervention period. A total of 272 (34,9% proportion) was received back in period one and of 424 (54,4% proportion) in the second period. In 184 (44,1%) of the questionnaires there is accordance to having had contact with the means of the intervention. There are better results after intervention for Medicines only correct what is wrong in the body and I know how medicines work in the body with significance and, with no significance for Medicines are integrated in the body after they have been ingested and After integrated medicines are treated to be eliminated. We found worst results after intervention but with no significance for Medicines can only make me feel better. Communication strategies in a non paternalistic model of practice are important if made in accordance to correct audio-visual or written techniques. As main conclusions we found that knowledge about pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and how medicines work in the body can be increased by well designed medical information campaigns.

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