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Title : MOBILE PHONE TEXT MESSAGING FOR PHARMACEUTICAL CARE IN SAUDI ARABIA: A PILOT STUDY
Authors : *Abdlatif A. Al-Dhawailie, Ahmad N. Al-Enezi, Bandar F. Al-Qhtani, Khaled T. Al-Enezi, Naif M. Al-Harbi, Nasser S. Al-Tulaian, Fowad Khurshid, and Mohammad S. AlSultan
Abstract : So far, there has been no published study assessing mobile phone text messaging for pharmaceutical care in the Saudi Arabia. Therefore, we designed and conducted a pilot study to measure the patient acceptance rate of using their personal mobile phone to receive pharmaceutical care in the country. This 6-week pilot study was conducted at King Khalid University Hospital (KKUH) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A short pilot study questionnaire in Arabic language was structured to gather information about benefiting patients. This questionnaire consisted of several items including demographic information. Among the 250 participants 40.8% were males and 59.2% were females. Arabic (87.2 %) was the preferred language of the text messages for the participants. The majority (74%) of participants had never used a mobile phone in healthcare previously. Agreement with the sharing of mobile number (72%) to the pharmaceutical service department and using the service (91.2%) and acceptance of idea of messaging system (97.2%) remained high throughout the study. Among the expected information, we have found that the most of the participants (98.7%) are looking for the information about the medicine, such as proper dose, the treatment duration, the proper way to use the medicine, and the possible side effect. This study illustrates that the participants were happy with the idea of using their mobiles in the pharmaceutical care. The acceptability of a text messaging system would be worth exploring in future research especially with the chronic diseases intervention, primary care services, medication dispensing and refill, patient education, smoking cessation program and in the elderly population.

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