DOI: 10.1093/jphsr/rmad049 ISSN: 1759-8893

Measuring the knowledge and perception of Jordanian health science students towards self-prescribed medications: a descriptive analysis study

Ra’ed M Shudifat, Sultan Mosleh, Suhair Almakhzomi, Mohammad Al Shdifat, Malek Alnajar, Ja’far M Alkhawaldeh, Lidia K Al-Halaseh
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics (miscellaneous)
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)



To assess the level of perception and awareness of health science students towards using over-the-counter (OTC) medicines and reveal any malpractice.


A descriptive cross-sectional correlational study employing an internet-based self-administered questionnaire collected data from 342 participants. The study model comprised four compartments: introductory, socio-demographic, utilizing OTC medications, and estimating the perception level. Descriptive statistics were used to describe participants’ demographics and main study variables. Non-parametric descriptive analysis and chi-squared tests were used to determine significance across the three medical schools. The response rate among students in their first academic year (33.9%) was the highest.


Most participants rely on OTC to treat minor conditions like pain and the common cold. Nutraceuticals have been used heavily. The participants showed a positive attitude towards self-treatment; the average perception score was 3.45 (SD = 0.60; 95%CI: 3.38–3.51). Besides, participants on regularly prescribed medications still determined the interaction between their treatments and non-prescribed medications. No significant association between attitude average score and participant age (r = −0.06; P = .273). Likewise, no differences were found in perceived attitude towards OTC based on gender (P = .41), academic level (P = .223), and college (P = .84).


This study provides an overview of the level of medical student’s perception towards self-treatment; despite the promising levels of knowledge and perception, it is necessitated to introduce interprofessional medical education to get an integrated knowledge and qualified graduates to provide the best health services.

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