Medication use and knowledge in a sample of Indigenous and non-Indigenous prisoners

Carroll, Megan, Kinner, Stuart A. and Heffernan, Edward B. (2014) Medication use and knowledge in a sample of Indigenous and non-Indigenous prisoners. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 38 2: 142-146. doi:10.1111/1753-6405.12203

Author Carroll, Megan
Kinner, Stuart A.
Heffernan, Edward B.
Title Medication use and knowledge in a sample of Indigenous and non-Indigenous prisoners
Journal name Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1753-6405
Publication date 2014-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/1753-6405.12203
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 38
Issue 2
Start page 142
End page 146
Total pages 5
Place of publication Richmond, VIC, Australia
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Asia
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Objective: To (a) characterise medication use and knowledge, according to Indigenous status, and (b) identify independent correlates of medication knowledge in a sample of adult prisoners.

Methods: Cross-sectional survey of 1,231 adult prisoners in Queensland, interviewed within six weeks of release. Measures included self-reported demographic and health-related characteristics, self-reported use of medications, the Hayes Ability Screening Index (HASI) and the Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36). Objective medication data were abstracted from prison medical records. A medication knowledge score was calculated to reflect the agreement between self-reported and objective medication use.

Results: 46% of participants were taking at least one medication. The most common class of medication was Central Nervous System (30% of participants). Medication knowledge was generally poor, with one quarter of prisoners unable to accurately identify any of their medications. Independent correlates of poor medication knowledge included not taking Central Nervous System medications, identifying as Indigenous and age >54.

Conclusions and Implications: Around half prisoners are taking medications in prison, but most have poor knowledge of what these medications are. Medication knowledge is associated with better adherence and may contribute to improved health outcomes post-release. Changes to prescribing and dispensing practices in prison may improve medication knowledge and health outcomes in this profoundly marginalised group. 
Keyword Indigenous
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 4 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 5 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Tue, 22 Apr 2014, 12:33:47 EST by System User on behalf of School of Medicine