To determine patients' awareness of the screening recommendations for hepatitis C virus (HCV) in "Baby Boomers," to assess patients' willingness to receive a point-of-care HCV screening test in the pharmacy, and to determine patients' barriers to receiving a point-of-care HCV screening test in a community pharmacy.
An anonymous 12-question survey was developed. Five shareholder pharmacies of American Pharmacy Services Corporation (APSC) volunteered to participate. Surveys were mailed to participating pharmacies with instructions to distribute to patients born in 1945 to 1965 at the pharmacy point-of-sale. Data were collected over a 12-week period from October 2016 to January 2017. Completed surveys were collected by participating pharmacies and mailed to the primary investigator. Data were analyzed with the use of descriptive statistics.
Ninety-five eligible surveys were returned and analyzed. A majority of respondents were female (63.00%) and held a bachelor degree or higher (63.16%); 38.95% of patients were aware of HCV age-based risk factors and screening recommendations. Only 9.80% of patients were aware of the fingerstick point-of-care testing (POCT) option for HCV. Nearly three-fourths (71.70%) were willing to receive POCT at a community pharmacy. A majority of patients (65.52%) were unwilling to pay an amount that would cover the cost of testing. Descriptive statistics, including a Pearson chi-square test, were used to analyze the data. Significant differences in the distribution of the percentages of people willing to receive testing and to pay for testing were found among levels of annual household income.
A majority of patients are willing to receive POCT at a community pharmacy. Patients were unwilling to pay for testing, however, so pharmacies looking to offer point-of-care HCV screening would need to secure further financial resources, such as insurance reimbursement or grant funding, for this service to be financially feasible.