Knowledge regarding medicines management of type 2 diabetes amongst patients attending a Community Health Centre in South Africa

Afsana Moosa, Selente Bezuidenhout, Johanna C. Meyer, Brian Godman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is growing in Sub-Saharan countries including South Africa. This is a concern given its appreciable impact on morbidity, mortality and costs with the recent introduction of universal health care in South Africa. The purpose of the study was to assess the knowledge of patients with T2DM attending a typical community health centre (CHC) regarding the management of their disease including risk factors and prevention to guide future initiatives. Typically, patients with T2DM in South Africa are managed in ambulatory care including CHCs. Method: A quantitative, descriptive study in a CHC. The sample included 217 adults with T2DM who have visited a physician as well as the pharmacy. Face-to-face patient exit interviews were conducted using a structured questionnaire. Key findings: Females predominated (65%), with the majority of patients >60 years (38.2%) and more than half from the Indian racial category. Most patients did not know how their medication controls their diabetes (79.3%) or did not know any of the side effects (83.9%) from their medication. Less than half of the patients knew how to take their medication, and more than a third of patients indicated that they were not practicing any form of self-care. Conclusion: The results indicate that these T2DM patients lacked sufficient knowledge regarding the management of their disease. Healthcare managers should consider instigating programmes to improve patients’ knowledge about the management of their disease as part of general initiatives within South Africa to improve the management of patients with chronic diseases in the public sector.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-28
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019


  • South Africa
  • medication
  • patient knowledge
  • self-care
  • type 2 diabetes


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