Beliefs about inhaled corticosteroids: Comparison of community pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and patients with asthma

Jeanine A. Driesenaar*, Peter A. G. M. De Smet, Rolf van Hulten, Rob Horne, Hanneke Zwikker, Bart van den Bemt, Sandra van Dulmen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


To compare pharmacists' and pharmacy technicians' perceptions of patients' beliefs regarding inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) with those of patients and to compare the ICS beliefs of pharmacists and technicians with those of patients with asthma.1269 community pharmacies were approached to fill out an online questionnaire; 1952 patients were sent a questionnaire by post. Beliefs (i.e., necessity and concerns) regarding ICS were measured using (an adapted version of) the Beliefs about Medicines Questionnaire (BMQ-specific). Pharmacists and technicians were instructed to fill out the BMQ for themselves, and to fill it out in the way they thought most of their patients would complete it.136 pharmacists, 90 pharmacy technicians and 161 patients with asthma completed the questionnaire. Pharmacists and technicians thought patients had more concerns about ICS than patients themselves reported (p <0.0001). They also thought that patients had stronger beliefs in their personal need for ICS than patients reported (p <0.01). Pharmacists reported lower levels of concerns than patients (p <0.05) and both providers attributed a higher level of necessity to ICS than patients did (p <0.0001).Pharmacists and technicians overestimate the personal need for treatment as well as the concerns patients with asthma have regarding ICS. They also have, to some extent, stronger positive beliefs about ICS than patients. If pharmacists and technicians expect that patients share their positive views about ICS, they might be less likely to elicit and address patients' doubts and concerns about ICS, which might be relevant for effective ICS treatment and subsequent patient outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1051-1058
JournalJournal of Asthma
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016


  • Beliefs about medicines
  • perceptions of patients' beliefs
  • patient-pharmacist communication
  • adherence
  • patient-centered communication

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