Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Title

Pharmacy-Level Quality Measures and the Consumer: Preferences and Attitudes

Date of Award

2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

M.S. in Pharmaceutical Science

First Advisor

Alicia S. Bouldin

Second Advisor

Donna West-Strum

Third Advisor

David J. Mccaffrey

Abstract

Objectives. To determine the perceptions of consumers toward community pharmacy quality measures and compare their perceptions regarding their pharmacy's overall quality before and after exposure to these measures. To explore the use of evaluative criteria applied by consumers to determine their preference for information related to these measures. Methods. Focus groups were used to refine attributes and levels used in the quantitative phase of the study. An Internet-based survey was administered to a national, online, consumer panel of community pharmacy patrons using maintenance medications. Descriptive statistics, MANOVA and t-tests were used to determine and compare perceptions related to the community pharmacy quality measures. Conjoint analysis was used to evaluate the relative importance of consumer preferences for the four selected attributes. Results. Consumers attributed a higher level of importance to items related to the pharmacy's operations and outcomes as compared to those related to its environment. Consumer perceptions regarding their pharmacy's overall quality were not found to be statistically significantly different from one another before and after exposure to the aforementioned items. 'Measure-type' was the most important followed by ' Source', 'Star ratings', and 'Accreditation ' was the least important attribute measured. Just over half (52.2%) of the respondents indicated they were likely to use report cards and would recommend their use to family and friends. Of these respondents who were likely to use, 69.5% reported they would switch to a pharmacy that matched their definition of 'ideal' based on report card information. Conclusions. Respondents perceived their current pharmacy to provide quality care, which suggests that they are satisfied with the level of care they are receiving from their pharmacy. 'Measure type' being rated as the most 'important' of the four attributes included in the conjoint analysis was not totally unexpected, since it conveys the characteristics of the pharmacy and thus, based on pharmacy patronage literature would be the most salient when making patronage decisions. Attitudes toward report cards were generally favorable, and it is possible that once report cards become a reality and are endorsed widely, consumers will use the data to inform their community pharmacy patronage decisions.

Concentration/Emphasis

Pharmaceutics

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