Satisfaction of patients receiving value added-services compared to traditional counter service for prescription refills in Malaysia

Keywords: satisfaction, outpatient pharmacy, value added-service, prescription refill, Malaysia.


Background: Patients’ satisfaction is the key parameter to measure the quality of healthcare services. Value added-services (VAS) were introduced to improve the quality of medication deliveries and to reduce the waiting time at outpatient pharmacy.

Objective: This study aimed to compare the satisfaction levels of patients receiving VAS and traditional counter service (TCS) for prescription refills in Port Dickson Hospital.

Methods: A single-center, cross-sectional study was conducted in the outpatient pharmacy department of Port Dickson Hospital from 1 March to 30 June 2017. Systematic sampling method was utilized to recruit subjects into the study, except mail pharmacy in which universal sampling method was used. Data collection was done via telephone interviews for both groups.

Results: There was 104 and 105 in TCS and VAS group respectively. The response rate was 99.5%. Overall, a significant higher total mean satisfaction score in VAS group was observed as compared to TCS group (43.39 versus 40.49, p=0.002). The same finding was observed after confounding factors were controlled (VAS=44.66, 95% CI 43.07:46.24 versus TCS=39.88, 95% CI 38.29:41.46; p<0.001). VAS respondents reported more satisfaction than TCS respondents for both general and technical aspects. Among the VAS offered, mail pharmacy service respondents showed highest total mean satisfaction score, but no significant different was seen between groups (p=0.064).

Conclusion: VAS respondents were generally more satisfied than TCS respondents for prescription refills. A longitudinal study is necessary to examine the impact of other dimensions and other types of VAS on patients’ satisfaction levels.

Original Research