Studies are exploring patients’ desire for medicines information and how they use it. Our work also includes researching the perspectives of both patients and the public on pharmacy services, using a wide range of methods. Our studies have explored the views of the general public on generic medicines and labelling, the provision of public health advice by community pharmacies, medication reviews and MURs.
Measuring the impact of medicines use
This work is designed to assess the effect of using long-term medicines on patients’ day-to-day lives, building on a previous study which found that many do in fact have negative impacts from medicines use. The work is led by Prof Janet Krska, Dr Sarah Corlett and Dr Barbra Katusiime. The team has developed an instrument for measuring the burden of using long-term medicines, the Living with Medicines Questionnaire (LMQ). The questionnaire is licensed by the University of Kent and available from Janet Krska. It has been translated into several languages and is being used in studies across the world. The LMQ has been used in our work in people with epilepsy and stroke and is currently being used in people with HIV.
Use of herbal medicines
Dr Sukvinder Bhamra is researching how people use herbal medicines in addition to or instead of allopathic medicines. She has also studied how health professionals use and recommend herbal medicines.
Following on from work exploring the sources of information patients use to learn about side effects from medicines, we are conducting a study to determine what patients really want from patient information leaflets. This involves PhD students both here at Medway and in Thailand.