Empowering hypertensive patients on chronic medicines at primary health care facilities in South Africa with knowledge to improve disease management

Rampamba, Enos M and Meyer, Johanna C and Helberg, Elvera A and Godman, Brian (2019) Empowering hypertensive patients on chronic medicines at primary health care facilities in South Africa with knowledge to improve disease management. Journal of Research in Pharmacy Practice. ISSN 2279-042X (In Press)

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    Abstract

    Objectives: Uncontrolled hypertension negatively impacts on mortality. This study aimed to evaluate the impact of a pharmacist-driven patient counselling and education model to empower hypertensive patients on chronic medication. Methods: An operational research project with a quasi-experimental design including an intervention group (55 patients) and a control group (31 patients) of chronic hypertensive patients. Data were collected with interview-administered questionnaires and analysed using SAS® version 9.4. Pharmacist interventions included an educational diary on hypertension management and patient counselling. Findings: There was a 34.7% improvement in patients’ understanding of what normal blood pressure (BP) is in the intervention group compared to the control group (p< 0.001). A 9.1% improvement was also observed in the intervention group in knowledge about the fact that systolic and diastolic BP are both important in controlling hypertension, with no change in the control group. After the intervention, 40.0% of patients versus 17.9% in the control group had adequate knowledge (≥75% correct answers) about hypertension and its management. Pharmacist interventions were well received by the majority of patients (>90%). Conclusions: A pharmacist driven patient counselling and education model can help improve patients’ hypertension knowledge and BP control. These should increasingly become routine, aiming to improve chronic disease management.