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A preliminary study to evaluate the behavior of Indian population toward E-pharmacy

Authors
  • Bansal, Seema
  • Kaur, Hardeep
  • Mahendiratta, Saniya
  • Sarma, Phulen
  • Kumar, Subodh
  • Sharma, Amit Raj
  • Joshi, Rupa
  • Bhattacharyya, Anusuya
  • Prajapat, Manisha
  • Prakash, Ajay
  • Medhi, Bikash
Type
Published Article
Journal
Indian Journal of Pharmacology
Publisher
Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Publication Date
May 10, 2022
Volume
54
Issue
2
Pages
131–137
Identifiers
DOI: 10.4103/ijp.ijp_836_21
PMID: 35546465
PMCID: PMC9249159
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Short Communication
License
Unknown

Abstract

The use of the Internet has increased exponentially for buying as well as selling of goods. Even the purchase of medications online is no exception. Owing to its benefits, there are certain risk factors in purchase of online medicines. Currently, the data on the use of Internet pharmacies are limited. Thus, the main objective of our study is to assess the knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAP) of Indian population toward E-pharmacy in India carried out in the Department of Pharmacology, PGIMER, Chandigarh. A KAP questionnaire was prepared which was distributed to the participants through Google Forms and a URL sent to them. This questionnaire was divided into four sections including demographics, occupation, income, and use of the Internet to measure the alertness toward the online purchase of medicines. A total of 322 responses were collected, out of which only 268 (83.2%) participants were aware of online pharmacy. The awareness was more in males and that too in urban population. Among the respondents, majority of the users prefer to buy medicines offline (81%, n = 217) which can be due to poor quality of medicines and lack of trustworthy websites. The utmost reason for buying the medicine online was deficiency of availability in the market and differences in the prices. The most preferred drugs respondents were willing to buy online were prescription drugs followed by cosmetics and dietary supplements. In conclusion, of our results, most of the people use the Internet to search for the medications online who prefer to consult the physicians before buying. Therefore, the future of online pharmacy can be improved if there will be some set guidelines, awareness, and knowledge among the users.

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