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Sustainability and medicines waste: investigating public attitudes towards the reuse of medicines returned to community pharmacies

Alhamad, H. (2018) Sustainability and medicines waste: investigating public attitudes towards the reuse of medicines returned to community pharmacies. PhD thesis, University of Reading

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To link to this item DOI: 10.48683/1926.00079994


Introduction The financial cost of medicinal waste in the UK is estimated as £300 million per year for prescribed medicines. Medicines reuse relates to the idea that unused prescribed medicines returned by one patient to a pharmacy can be re-dispensed to another patient as a strategy for reducing medicinal waste in the UK. Aims This thesis aimed to capture people’s beliefs and intentions towards reusing medicines that are returned to the pharmacies, using the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB). Methods and analysis The research uses a mixed method study design, using qualitative interviews to identify themes that were then classified using TPB (phase 1), in order to develop and validate a Medicine Reuse Questionnaire (MRQ) (phase 2), which was used to quantify the views of a large sample of respondents drawn from around the UK (phase 3) about medicines reuse. Results and discussions Medicines reuse was defined and people’s ideas about advantages and disadvantages, who might approve or disapprove, and factors that would impede or facilitate reusing medicines were mapped using thematic analysis. The MRQ was valid (confirmatory factor analysis showed the factor loading of all items to be >0.5; the item level content validity index was > 0.8) and reliable (Cronbach’s alpha measuring internal consistency of the direct measures items was >0.7; Pearson’s correlation measuring stability of the indirect measures items was >0.5). A total of 1,003 valid responses were analysed and subjective norms had the strongest positive effect on intentions with standardized path coefficient of 0.55 (p < 0.001, n = 1003). Conclusion This research suggests that people living in the UK have positive intentions and could reuse medicine in the future. However, ensuring safety and quality of medicines that will be offered for reuse is vital for people to agree to reuse medicines in the future.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Donyai, P. and Patel, N.
Thesis/Report Department:School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > School of Pharmacy
ID Code:79994
Date on Title Page:2017


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