• Ming Ming Wen Faculty of Pharmacy, Pharos University in Alexandria, Alexandria, Egypt
  • Heba Aref Harrison School of Pharmacy, Auburn University, Auburn, AL,USA.
  • Ahmad Abozaid Faculty of Pharmacy, Pharos University in Alexandria, Alexandria, Egypt
  • Nahla Hesham Kandil Clinical Pharmacy Department, MOH hospitals, Egypt
  • Yasmin Hussein Elsobky Drug information center, Cairo, Egypt




Drug information center, Thematic analysis, Survey, Quality evaluation, Questionnaire, Egypt


Objective: The first objective of this work was to examine the services provided by six drug information centers (DICs) in Alexandria, Egypt. The second objective was to evaluate the quality of the replies to the drug information query. The third objective was to assess the conceptual need of DICs from community pharmacists, other health care professionals and the general public.

Methods: This study was conducted through three stages. Stage I was a field survey to assess predefined parameters in the current DICs in Alexandria. Stage II was a retrospective cross-sectional study to assess the quality of the drug information replies through an external expert review process. Stage III was a population survey and thematic analysis using questionnaires and interview recording.

Results: Activities of DICs include: DIR answering service (100%), adverse drug reaction reporting (100%), issuing bulletins (83.3%), education (83.3%), drug use evaluation (50%) and participation in P and T committees (33.3%). The most frequent question categories asked were dosing, side effects, treatment guidelines and drug interactions. Half of the DICs were affiliated with hospitals; however, a general lacking confidence level of these DICs on the professionalism and the impact on patient care for the DIC services provided was identified. There was an obvious problem in formatting the ultimate question in a question format rather than a sentence format in all DICs. The most accurately answered request was adverse drug reactions. All surveyed groups considered that it is very important to have a DIC accessible to the community free of charge.

Conclusion: It is necessary to establish an university-based DIC to incorporate training, education and research into the existing services. A DIC network with definitive standards of services in the future should provide safe and effective quality-assured pharmaceutical care to meet the needs and expectations of the community and improve its delivery to the public. The results and recommendations of this study can be inspired and generalized to other developing countries that have similar health systems as in Egypt.



Download data is not yet available.


Rosenberg JM, Fuentes RI, Starr CH, Kirschenbaum HL, McGuire H. Pharmacist-operated drug information centers in the United States. Am J Health Syst Pharm 1995;52:991-6.

Pradhan SC. The performance of drug information center at the University of Kansas medical center Kansas City, USA-experiences, and evaluation. Indian J Pharmacol 2002;34:123-9.

Calder G, Davies JS, McNulty H, Smith JC. Drug information network in the United Kingdom National Health Service. Am J Health Syst Pharm 1981;38:663-6.

Beaird SL, Coley RMR, Crea KA. Current status of drug information centers. Am J Health Syst Pharm 1992;49:103-6.

Rosenberg JM, Koumis T, Nathan JP, Cicero LA, McGuire H. Current status of pharmacist-operated drug information centers in the United States. Am J Health Syst Pharm 2004;61:2023-32.

Müllerová H, VlÄek J. European drug information centers-survey of activities. Pharm World Sci 1998;20:131-5.

Maguire ME, D’Arcy PF. Present drug information services in Europe including ‘The two pharmacists of Verona’. Int Pharm J 1990;4:49-56.

Taggiasco N, Sarrut B, Doreau CG. European survey of independent drug information centers. Ann Pharmacother 1992;26:422-8.

World Health Organization. WHO policy perspectives on medicines: promoting rational use of medicines: core components. Geneva: WHO; 2002.

World Health Organization. WHO medicines strategy 2004-2007: countries at the core. Geneva: WHO; 2004.

Ghaibi SH, Ipema HE, Gabay MI. ASHP Guidelines on the pharmacist’s role in providing drug information. Am J Health Syst Pharm 2015;72:573-7.

IUPHAR (the International Union of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology). Clinical pharmacology in healthcare, teaching and research. J Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol 2010;107:531–59.

Gautam K. Addressing the research-practice gap in health care management. J Public Health Management Practice 2008;14:155-9.

Grol R, Grimshaw J. From best evidence to best practice: effective implementation of change in patients’ care. Lancet 2003;362:1225-30.

Tumwikirize WA, Ogwal-Okeng JW, Vernby A, Anokbonggo WW, Gustafsson LL, Lundborg CS. Access to up-to-date drug information in developing countries continues to pose problems. Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf 2007;16:1177-9.

Bergman U, Wiholm BE. Drug-related problems are causing admission to a medical clinic. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 1981;20:193-200.

Pirmohamed M, James S, Meakin S, Green C, Scott AK, Walley TJ, et al. Adverse drug reactions as cause of admission to hospital: prospective analysis of 18820 patients. Br Med J 2004;329:15-9.

Griffey RT, Lo HG, Burdick E, Keohane C, Bates DW. Guided medication dosing for elderly emergency patients using real-time, computerized decision support. J Am Med Informatics Association 2012;19:86-93.

Abdel-Latif MM, Sabra K. Clinical pharmacy practice in Egyptian hospitals. Am J Health Syst Pharm 2016;73:e63-6.

Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics. Homepage. Available from: http://www.capmas.gov.eg/HomePage.aspx. [Last accessed on 01 Mar 2016].

Vigneshwaran E, Reddy PY, Devanna N. Drug information services to HIV/AIDS care and support centre in resource-limited settings. Asian J Pharm Clin Res 2013;6:175-8.

Lacey A, Luff D. Qualitative research analysis: The NIHR RDS for the East Midlands/The NIHR RDS for Yorkshire and the Humber; 2007. p. 12-5.

DeSantis L, Ugarriza DN. The Concept of the theme as used in qualitative nursing research. Western J Nursing Res 2000;22:351.

Quinn PM. Qualitative analysis and interpretation. In: Quinn PM, editor. Qualitative research and evaluation methods. 3rd ed. California EU: Sage Publications Inc; 2002. p. 452-81.

Kahlke RM. Generic qualitative approaches pitfalls and benefits of methodological mixology. Int J Qual Methods 2014;13:e37-52.

Tavakol M, Dennick R. Making sense of Cronbach’s alpha. Int J Med Edu 2011;2:53-5.

Hertzog MA. Considerations in determining sample size for pilot studies. Res Nursing Health 2008;31:180-91.

Patel H, Adepu R, Sapthagiri R, Gurumurthy P. Drugs and therapeutic information service provided by clinical pharmacists for an improved patient care: an experience from a tertiary care teaching hospital. Asian J Pharm Clin Res 2015;8:175-8.



How to Cite

Wen, M. M., H. Aref, A. Abozaid, N. H. Kandil, and Y. H. Elsobky. “QUALITY EVALUATION AND SURVEY OF THE ESSENTIAL NEED FOR DRUG INFORMATION CENTERS”. International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, vol. 8, no. 11, Nov. 2016, pp. 137-43, doi:10.22159/ijpps.2016v8i11.14085.



Original Article(s)