Factors Associated with Provision of Addiction Treatment Facility Information by Tennessee Community Pharmacists

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Introduction: Community pharmacists in the United States routinely serve as intermediaries in the process of providing (i.e., dispensing) prescription opioids (POs) to patients for whom they are prescribed. Similar to most states, Tennessee (TN) has experienced exponential increases in PO dispensing, abuse and overdose deaths over the past decade. A multifaceted approach has been put forth by the United States National Drug Control Strategy to combat PO abuse, one aspect of which is expanding the extent to which health care professionals detect and address substance use disorders. Despite little exploration of pharmacist provided PO abuse/misuse interventions, our previous research reveals that 26% of TN community pharmacists have provided addiction treatment facility information to one or more patients in the past, and 13% of pharmacists have addiction treatment facility information in their pharmacies. The objective of this study is to investigate the associations between community pharmacist and community pharmacy characteristics and the provision of addiction treatment facility information to pharmacy patients. Methods: A survey was administered to a stratified random sample of licensed TN pharmacists in 2012 using Dillman’s Tailored Design Method. The survey instrument assessed community pharmacists’ attitudes, beliefs and behaviors specific to prescription drug abuse communication. Logistic regression techniques were used to identify correlates of provision of addiction facility information by pharmacists. Results: A response rate of 40% was obtained. Univariate logistic regression analysis indicated the provision of addiction treatment information was associated with being male, increased average number of hours worked per week, having addiction treatment information readily available in the pharmacy, higher self-efficacy beliefs regarding ability to discuss addiction treatment facility options, discuss perceived PO abuse, and discuss perceived PO addiction with patients, participation in PO abuse specific continuing education (CE), and employment in an independent pharmacy setting. Multiple logistic regression analysis indicated that being male (OR = 2.2; 95% CI = 1.4-3.6), having high task-specific self-efficacy beliefs (OR = 4.2; 95% CI = 2.7-6.5), working more hours (OR = 1.00; 95% CI = 1.02-1.05), participating in prescription drug abuse-related CE (OR = 2.9; 95% CI = 1.7-5.0), and having treatment facility information in the practice setting (OR = 8.2; 95% CI = 4.4-15.4) were statistically significant predictors of information provision. Implications: As interventions and models are developed that expand prevention and treatment efforts, factors should be considered that influence health care providers’ prescription drug abuse/misusedeterrent behaviors. Our research has the potential to inform these interventions and thereby expand the extent to which community pharmacists engage in the detection and care of patients with substance use disorders.


Johnson City, TN

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