Article Text

DI-018 Public perception of pharmacogenetic testing
  1. D Heuchel1,
  2. A Russ1,
  3. F Wirth2,
  4. U Jaehde1,
  5. LM Azzopardi2
  1. 1Rheinische Friedrich-WIlhelms-Universität Bonn, Pharmazie, Bonn, Germany
  2. 2University of Malta, Pharmacy, Msida, Malta


Background Pharmacogenetic (PGx) testing may enhance patients’ confidence in the safety and efficacy of prescribed medications.

Purpose To evaluate public perception of PGx testing.

Material and methods A self-administered questionnaire was developed and psychometrically evaluated using a two round Delphi technique for validation and test–retest for reliability. The questionnaire consisted of two sections (A and B) with a total of 20 questions. Section A dealt with general questions about PGx testing and section B focused on participants’ willingness towards PGx testing. Following ethics approval, 500 participants were recruited by convenience sampling over 6 weeks (June and July 2016); 250 from public places in 11 different localities and 250 from 5 community pharmacies in different localities. Participants in health oriented occupations were excluded. Descriptive statistics were calculated with IBM SPSS V.23.

Results Of the 500 participants, the majority (61%) were women, mean age was 45 years (range 18–86 years) and most (37%) were educated to post-secondary level. The majority (85%) were not aware of the term PGx testing. Following an explanation by the investigator, most participants indicated that they would be ‘very willing’ to have a PGx test performed to assess the effectiveness (37%) and safety (39%) of their prescribed medications and the majority (51%) ‘strongly agreed’ that a PGx test would prevent them from taking an inappropriate drug or dose. The majority (70%) of participants identified drugs to treat cancer as the drug class for which they perceived PGx testing to be most important. The majority (67%) of participants selected the physician as the professional who should perform the test. As regards the preferred location to have the test performed, the majority (61%) selected the hospital. When asked about the cost of PGx testing, most (42%) participants thought the test should be free of charge. As regards time for result, the majority (56%) of participants would expect to have the result within a few days. Most participants (40%) ‘strongly agreed’ that PGx testing should be performed routinely.

Conclusion Participants in this study had a positive overall perception of PGx testing and presented expectations of PGx testing as a means to assess efficacy and safety of prescribed medications.

No conflict of interest

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