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Ther Adv Drug Saf. 2019 Jan 25;10:2042098618816279. doi: 10.1177/2042098618816279. eCollection 2019.

Educational intervention to improve the knowledge, attitude and practice of healthcare professionals regarding pharmacovigilance in South-South Nigeria.

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Department of Medicine, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin-City, Nigeria.
Pharmacoepidemiology, Université de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France Bordeaux PharmacoEpi, INSERM CIC1401, Bordeaux, France.
Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, University of Benin, Benin-City, Nigeria Department of Medicine, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin-City, Nigeria.



Our aim in this study was to evaluate the effect of a combined educational intervention and year-long monthly text message reinforcements via the Short Messaging System (SMS) on the knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of healthcare professionals (HCPs) towards pharmacovigilance.


Six randomly selected teaching hospitals in the South-South zone of Nigeria were randomized in 1:1 ratio into intervention and control groups. The educational intervention consisted of delivering a seminar followed by sending monthly texts message reinforcements via SMS over 12 months. Then a semi-structured questionnaire regarding the KAP of pharmacovigilance was completed by HCPs working in the hospitals after the intervention. Data was analysed descriptively and inferentially.


A total of 931 HCPs participated in the post intervention study (596 in the intervention and 335 in the control). The M:F ratio was 1:1.5. According to the KAP questionnaire, a significant difference was observed between the intervention and control groups, regarding knowledge of the types of adverse drug reactions (ADRs). ADR resulting from pharmacological action of the drug (85.6% versus 77%, p = 0.001), the fact that ADRs can persist for a long time; (60.1% versus 53.4%, p = 0.024) and a higher awareness of the ADR reporting form (48.7% versus 18.8%, p < 0.001). Most respondents in the intervention group (68.5% versus 60.6%, p = 0.001) believed they should report ADRs even if they were unsure an ADR has occurred, a greater proportion of HCPs from the intervention group had significantly observed an ADR (82% versus 73.4%, p = 0.001). Furthermore, of the 188 who had ever reported an ADR, 41% from the intervention group used the national ADR reporting form compared with 19.8% from the controls (p < 0.001).


This educational intervention and the use of SMS as a reinforcement tool appeared to have positively impacted on the knowledge and practice of pharmacovigilance in South-South Nigeria with a less-than-impressive change in attitude. Continuous medical education may be required to effect long-lasting changes.


Nigeria; SMS; adverse drug reaction reporting; attitude and practice; educational intervention; healthcare professionals; knowledge; pharmacovigilance

Conflict of interest statement

Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.

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