Journal of RNA and Genomics

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Research Article - Journal of RNA and Genomics (2022) Volume 0, Issue 0

Assessment of Practices of Self-Medication with Antibiotics and Its Associated Factors among Medical Students at The Copper belt University.

Introduction: Self – medication is a serious problem of public health concern worldwide. It refers to the use of drugs to manage self-diagnosed disorders or symptoms and is mostly common in developing countries due to wider increase of drug availability without prescription. Some reports show that up to 80% of all drugs are purchased without any prescription in developing countries, which is substantiated by reports that the prevalence of self-medication in developing countries is in the range of 12.7% to 95%. Self – medication involves obtaining drugs without prescription and taking the drug based on advice of and from relatives and friends. Objective: To assess self – medication practices with antibiotics and its associated factors among medical students at the Copperbelt University. Method: A cross – sectional descriptive study method was used for this study. Data was collected using a structured questionnaire which had both closed and open – ended questions. A questionnaire was chosen in this study because it allowed the researcher to collect the most complete and accurate data in a logical flow. A sample of the questionnaire was given to the students who consented to participate in the study at the Copperbelt university school of medicine. Results: A total number of 334 participants were involved in this study. The majority of the study participants were females at 166 (49.7%) and males at 163 (50.3%). A number of students were in the age range of 18–24 years of age being at 200 (59.9%) 25-29 at 121(36.2%), 30-34 at 9(2.7%) and above 34(1.2%) were only 41.2. The study further showed that 179 (53.6%) of participants had good knowledge, 151 (45.2%) had average knowledge and 4 (1.2%) had poor knowledge of self-medication. 34% of participants had good practice, the majority 66% had a bad practice with the common self-prescribed drugs being the analgesia at (80.5%) where Paracetamol was mostly prescribed by 77% of students followed by antibiotics (52.1%) where amoxicillin was at 28.2% and the least prescribed drug was a proton pump inhibitor (6.9%). There was an association between knowledge on self-medication and the age of participant (P value 0.044). Conclusion: The prevalence of self-medication with antibiotics among medical students at Copperbelt University is common and this calls for an urgent organized effort beginning at the local level to the national level so as to curtail the use of antibiotics without consent from medical personnel or a prescription from an appropriate office.

Author(s): Banda Chemwawu Owen

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