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Digital drug information sources: quality assessment and ethical aspects


E.E. Chupandina, A.Yu. Rodivilova, M.S. Kurolap Voronezh State University, 1, Universtitetskaya Sq., Voronezh 394018, Russian Federation

Introduction. At the present stage of development of the pharmaceutical market in digital transformation of traditional channels for the promotion of medications, there is a rapid increase in the number of digital drug information sources. To date, there are no ethics risk assessment procedures in drug promotion using digital sources. Objective: to assess the quality of digital drug information sources used by healthcare professionals in their professional activities. Material and methods. The authors analyzed 105 anonymous postal questionnaires sent to Voronezh internists and general practitioners in their preferences for digital drug promotion sources. Content analysis was used. Results. The authors compiled a list of digital drug information sources used by healthcare professionals and selected criteria for assessing the quality of digital drug information sources. Weighted factors were calculated for each criterion. The approach using a weighted average for single criteria was applied to comprehensively assess the quality of professional drug information sources and to reveal the most significant sources for healthcare professionals, such as websites of medical periodicals, healthcare representatives’ remote visits (0.86), Internet versions of drug references books (0.85), and educational portals and Internet programs for physicians (0.83). Conclusion. The main advantages and disadvantages of the investigated digital drug information sources and the related ethical risks are shown, which has formed the basis for the development of special requirements for these sources that will be able to lower the possible risks of ethics-related impropriety.

digital drug information sources
criteria for digital source assessment
healthcare professionals

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