Back to Journals » Patient Preference and Adherence » Volume 14

Self-Medication Practices and Associated Factors Among Health-Care Professionals in Selected Hospitals of Western Ethiopia

Authors Fekadu G, Dugassa D, Negera GZ, Woyessa TB, Turi E, Tolossa T, Fetensa G, Assefa L, Getachew M, Shibiru T

Received 30 December 2019

Accepted for publication 7 February 2020

Published 20 February 2020 Volume 2020:14 Pages 353—361


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Ginenus Fekadu,1 Dinka Dugassa,1 Getandale Zeleke Negera,2 Tilahun Bakala Woyessa,3 Ebisa Turi,4 Tadesse Tolossa,4 Getahun Fetensa,5 Lemessa Assefa,4 Motuma Getachew,4 Tesfaye Shibiru6

1Department of Pharmacy, Institute of Health Sciences, Wollega University, Nekemte, Ethiopia; 2School of Pharmacy, Institute of Health, Jimma University, Jimma, Ethiopia; 3Department of Midwifery, Institute of Health Sciences, Wollega University, Nekemte, Ethiopia; 4Department of Public Health, Institute of Health Sciences, Wollega University, Nekemte, Ethiopia; 5Department of Nursing, Institute of Health Sciences, Wollega University, Nekemte, Ethiopia; 6Department of Pediatrics and Child Health, Wollega University Referral Hospital, Nekemte, Ethiopia

Correspondence: Ginenus Fekadu
Clinical Pharmacy Unit Department of Pharmacy, Institute of Health Sciences, Wollega University, Nekemte, Oromia, Ethiopia
Tel +251-917137145
Fax +251576617980

Background: Even though the type, extent and reasons for self-medication practice (SMP) vary, globally self-medication (SM) is rising to relieve burdens on health services. However, inappropriate SMP results in economic wastes, damage of vital organs, incorrect therapy selection, risk of adverse drug reactions and development of antimicrobial-resistant pathogens. These consequences have severe implications including legal, ethical and quality of health-care delivery. Temporal increment and high prevalence of SM among health professionals is also a major bottleneck for Ethiopia. Hence, the study aimed to assess the SM among health-care professionals (HCPs) in selected governmental hospitals of Western Ethiopia.
Methods: An instiution-based cross-sectional study was conducted among 338 HCPs using a pre-tested and self-adminstered questionnaries from March 1 to 25, 2018. Simple random sampling was used to select study participants and SMP (yes or no) was the outcome of the study variable. Data were entered and analyzed using SPSS version 20. Crude and adjusted odds ratios (95% CI) were calculated and all results were deemed to be statistically significant when p < 0.05.
Results: Among the 338 participants, 184 (54.4%) were females and the mean age of the study participants was 25± 3.23 years. About 154 (45.6%) of them had work experience of less than 5 years and 49.7% were nurses by profession. The prevalence of SM was 73.4% with 3 months of recall for SM. Familiarity with medicines and ailments (46.8%) and mildness of illness (40.7%) were the most common reasons to self-medicate. The most frequently reported ailments were headache (37.1%) and gastric pain (29.8%). Analgesics (44.4%) and antibiotics (42.7%) were the most commonly used self-medicated categories of drugs. Female sex (Adjusted odds ratio [AOR] =2.13, 95% CI: 1.43– 8.66), age 20– 29 years (AOR=4.53, 95% CI: 1.01– 14.45) and work experience of < 5 years (AOR= 3.01, 95% CI: 1.32– 11.71) were significantly associated with SMPs.
Conclusion: The study revealed a high prevalence of SMP among HCPs. Sex, age, and work experience were significantly associated with SMPs. Hence, the use of prescription drugs without prescription should be discouraged and appropriate health education should be provided by all concerned bodies on the proper use of drugs.

Keywords: self-medication, self-medication practice, health care professionals, Ethiopia

Creative Commons License This work is published by Dove Medical Press Limited, and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License. The full terms of the License are available at The license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]