Curr Pharm Teach Learn 2018 04 11;10(4):453-462. Epub 2018 Jan 11.
Faculty of Pharmacy, International Islamic University Malaysia, Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia. Electronic address:
Introduction: The role of pharmacists in the patient care process is developing in the Malaysian healthcare setting. Pharmacy students are required to be aware of cardiology pharmacy practice as this is one of the top national disease burdens in Malaysia. This study was conducted to assess the knowledge and perceptions of pharmacy students toward the cardiology pharmacy specialty practice.
Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted. The study instrument was a 31-item self-developed questionnaire. The target participants were third and fourth-year pharmacy students in one of the public Malaysian pharmacy schools.
Results: The overall response rate was 174/209 students (83.3%); 42 (24.1%) were male and 132 (75.9%) were female. The majority of students possessed a sound knowledge regarding cardiology pharmacy services and roles of the cardiology pharmacist. Nevertheless, important differences were noted between the participants in a few particular areas. These included prior familiarity with the term "cardiology pharmacy" (p = 0.032), limitations to the active participation of pharmacists in the cardiology unit in Malaysia (p = 0.013), and perceptions toward the necessity of a cardiology pharmacist to the Malaysian healthcare system (p = 0.005).
Conclusions: Overall, the pharmacy students in our sample have high knowledge of and positive perceptions toward cardiology pharmacy practice. The majority of students perceived the introduction of cardiology pharmacy as a stand-alone subject in the undergraduate pharmacy curriculum in a positive manner. This study may be considered as a starting point for Malaysian pharmacy schools to consider offering focused clinical learning aligned with both the nation's health priorities and the prospective specialty level of clinical pharmacy practice in the country.