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T-10: Patient Perceptions & Utilization of Patient Information Leaflets (PILs)

Poster Presenter

      Judith Thompson

      • UCB, Inc.
        United States


To assess the utilization and perception of Patient Information Leaflets (PILs) that accompany pharmacy dispensed prescriptions.


Two cohorts of social media followers were invited to complete a six-item survey about the utility of PILs. Respondents self-reported awareness, utilization and perception of the PIL. Responses were pooled, analyzed based on completed survey questions and summarized using descriptive statistics.


Four-hundred sixty-one social media followers completed at least one question of the six-item survey; reported results are based on number of respondents per question. Eighty-nine (19.5%; n=456) respondents reported that they do not read any parts of the PIL. Respondents that reported that they do not read any parts of the PIL or that they only read specific parts of the PIL indicated that their reasons for not reading fell into two major buckets. One-hundred forty-six (38.3%; n=381) respondents indicated they do not read the PIL because the “writing is too small” or “it’s too complicated”. Another 187 (49.1%; n=381) respondents indicated they do not read the PIL because “my doctor/pharmacist already explained it” or “I already know the important information”. A pictogram was included in the survey to gauge the respondent’s comprehension and potential utilization if the image were included in the PIL. The majority (81.4%; n=382) of the respondents were able to correctly interpret the meaning of the pictogram, and 86.5% (n=377) of the respondents indicated that if the pictogram was included in their PIL, they would read it.


A majority (80.5%) of those surveyed on the epilepsy and movement disorder social media sites either read the entire PIL or some parts of it. Study findings suggest that of those that don’t read the PIL, greater than one-third are not reading it due to small writing or complicated text. The survey also suggests that there exists an opportunity to engage and educate patients using pictograms. Of those surveyed, pictograms were found to be useful in conveying pertinent medical information and to entice the respondents to read their PIL. A possible limitation of the study is the generalizability of the results. The study population is comprised of followers of disease state-specific social media sites; thus respondents represent a subpopulation of people engaged within the respective disease community. Further evaluation is needed to determine if healthcare professionals that provide medication counseling would find utility in a different PIL format.

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