Self-medication with oral antibiotics among University students in United Arab Emirates
Purpose: To investigate the prevalence of antibiotic use without prescriptions and to identify factors associated with this behavior among university students using oral non-prescription drugs (ONPD).
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among the students of major universities in UAE. A multistage sampling technique was used in the present study.
Results: Out of 2875 students, only 2355 (81.9 %) questionnaire were fully answered and included. Of 2355, more than half (1348; 57.2 %) of the participants reported using ONPD. More than one-third (484, 35.9 %) of 1348 participants used antibiotics without a prescription during the 90 days prior to the present study. Binary logistic regression identified nine statistically significant variables: nationality (OR = 0.471, 95 % CI: 0.326 - 0.681, p < 0.001); cost-influence behavior (OR = 1.716, 95 % CI: 1.175 - 2.508, p < 0.005); belief in ONPD effectiveness (OR = 0.332, 95 % CI: 0 .135 - 0.815, p < 0.05); year of study (OR = 0.310, 95 %, CI: 0.141 - 0.681, p < 0.004); medication knowledge (OR = 0.619, 95 % CI: 0.443 - 0.866, p < 0.005); self-care orientation (OR=1.878, 95 % CI: 1.304 - 2.706, p < 0.001); using ONPD helps to save money (OR=1.665, 95 % CI: 1.047-2.649, p<0.04); and urgency of use (OR = 1.644, 95 %, CI: 1.144 - 2.363, p < 0.007); as well as being healthcare students (OR = 1.465, 95 %, CI: 1.012 - 2.120, p < 0.05).
Conclusion: There is a need for educational intervention to improve students’ knowledge, attitude, and awareness regarding the risk of using antibiotics without prescriptions.
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