Objective: To investigate beliefs concerning medication among patients and pharmaceutical specialists (3 or 5 years of higher education). Method: The Beliefs about Medicines Questionnaire (BMQ)-General, which assesses beliefs about medicines in general, was used. Results: For the analyses, 141 (response rate 82%) and 136 (response rate 79%) questionnaires from the patients and pharmaceutical specialists, respectively, were included. The results showed a statistical significant difference between patients and pharmaceutical specialists in beliefs about medicines. Whereas the patients expressed a more negative attitude about medicines (stronger beliefs about medicines as being harmful and less favourable) the pharmaceutical specialists expressed the contrary. However, the pharmaceutical specialists had stronger concerns regarding over-use of medicines as compared to the patients. Conclusion: Patients and pharmaceutical specialists expressed different views regarding medications. To achieve concordance in the pharmaceutical care process, pharmaceutical specialists need to exchange information about patients' experiences and not take for granted that they share their views regarding medications. Practice implications: The pharmaceutical specialists should elicit the patient's concerns about the prescribed medications and be aware of that non-adherence is often the result of the patients making rational decisions about their treatment. © 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
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