Aim: To test the feasibility of the Medication Use Self-Efficacy (MUSE) Scale in clinical practice including its ability to identify patients with low medication understanding.
Method: Inpatients and day ward patients taking at least 1 regular medication were asked to complete the MUSE Scale. Patients requiring formal interpreter services and those who didn’t manage their medications were excluded. Pharmacists indicated agreement with MUSE ratings based on assessment of medication understanding during medication history interview. A risk-adapted approach to medication counselling was implemented to target education requirements for patients with poor medication understanding. Patients were surveyed post-discharge on experience of pharmacist medication education and asked to confirm their understanding of new medications.
Results: Eleven patients were recruited, mean age 61 years (range 37-78), 54% male and 54% listed high school as highest level of education. Patients were taking a median of 6 medications (range 2-14) on admission and 11 medications (range 1-16) on discharge.
An average of 5.3 minutes (SD 4.3, range 1-15) was taken to complete the MUSE. Mean scores across all MUSE items indicated good medication understanding, and good level of agreement with pharmacists.
Participants rated pharmacists explanation of medicines as mean of 8.4 (SD 1.6) out of 10, with 91% of patients agreeing that the explanation was clear enough. All participants indicated strong preference for written information. 60% of patients were able to provide all details of the new medications given on discharge.
Conclusion: This feasibility study demonstrated usability of the MUSE in clinical practice. Wider implementation will provide better understanding of the MUSE in identifying patients with low medication understanding. The implementation of guidelines on medication education which incorporate health literacy principles will assist in improving the high quality education provided by pharmacists.