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Drug information seeking behaviours of health care professionals in Iran

Iman Tahamtan (Student Research Committee, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran)
Mina Tavassoli Farahi (Health Information Management Research Center, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran.)
Askar Safipour Afshar (Paramedical Faculty, Hamadan University of Medical Sciences, Hamadan, Iran.)
Hamid R Baradaran (Center for Educational Research in Medical Science, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.)

New Library World

ISSN: 0307-4803

Article publication date: 9 March 2015




The purpose of this paper is to list the resources that Iranian health-care professionals used to access drug-related information, to know the features and types of drug information resources which were much more important for health-care professionals, the problems they encountered in seeking drug information and the way they organized and re-found the information that they had retrieved. Drug-related queries are one of the most common types of questions in medical settings.


This was a descriptive-analytical study conducted in Iran during 2014. The data collection tool was a self-designed questionnaire. Data analysis was conducted using Statistical Package for Social Sciences. Descriptive statistics and chi-square test were used to analyse the data and examine the research hypothesis.


Participants used books, drug manuals, search engines and medical databases more frequently, and less than half of them consulted colleagues to acquire drug-related information for clinical, educational and research purposes. Handheld computers were used by most participants to access and store drug information. Lack of access to drug information and lack of enough time were the main obstacles in seeking drug information. A significant association (p value = 0.024) was detected between organizing and re-finding information for future uses.


This study investigated drug information-seeking behaviours of health-care professionals and the way they managed this information in a developing country that lacks necessary information technology infrastructures. Training programmes are required to help health-care professionals to find and access reliable and up-to-date drug information resources and to more easily re-find the found drug information for future uses.



This study was supported by Health Information Management Research Center, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran. The authors would like to appreciate the referees for their valuable comments on the manuscript. The authors declare that there is no conflict of interests.


Tahamtan, I., Tavassoli Farahi, M., Afshar, A.S. and Baradaran, H.R. (2015), "Drug information seeking behaviours of health care professionals in Iran", New Library World, Vol. 116 No. 3/4, pp. 173-186.



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