Pharmacist’s Intervention in the Control of Blood Sugar Levels in Randomised Diabetes Patients at a Primary Health Care Setting in Benin City
Background: The extended roles of pharmacists in Nigeria in the improvement of quality of health care at the primary health care (PHC) level is currently poorly executed even though pharmacists have been proven to be involved in interventional activities in health care delivery.
Objective: To evaluate pharmacists' intervention in the control of blood sugar levels of diabetes patients in a PHC setting in Benin City, Nigeria.
Methods: At baseline, the fasting blood sugar (FBS), glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c), body mass index (BMI) and blood pressure (BP) of randomly selected 170 diabetic patients in a primary health care centre were evaluated. This was followed-up with intervention by the pharmacists through counselling on lifestyle modification, selfmedication and drug adherence on monthly basis for three consecutive months after which the FBS, HbA1c, BMI and BP were re-evaluated.
Results: indicated significant reduction in BMI, HbAlc and FBS from 27.1±4.2 kg/m2, 8.1±3.0% and 10.0±4.2 mmol/l to 23.5±3.5 kg/m2, 7.1±1.8% and 8.5±2.1 mmol/l, respectively (p<0.001) was observed following the intervention by the pharmacists.
Conclusion: Direct involvement of pharmacists in the care of diabetic patients in PHC settings can significantly improve the quality of life provided to these patients and hence reduce mortality resulting from the disease. Recruitment of reasonable number of pharmacists should always be considered in health policies for PHC settings in developing countries.
Keywords: Diabetes mellitus, blood sugar levels, pharmacist intervention, primary health care.