Assessing Pharmacists' Knowledge of Halal Medications to Support the Health Beliefs of Patients

  • Lakesha Butler Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy
  • Thy Mai Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy
  • Catherine Santanello Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy
Keywords: hala medications, mushbooh, haram, religious beliefs


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to explore the knowledge of pharmacists’ on Halal medications. In addition, it was a review of Halal medications in order to understand which resources need to be implemented to make this information readily available to support the health beliefs of patients and improve medication adherence.

Methods: Self-administered, anonymous questionnaires were distributed to pharmacists via Qualtrics by email, text message, and social media. Questionnaires assessed pharmacists’ knowledge on Halal medications and resources. Inclusion criteria included registered pharmacists working in any healthcare setting.

Results: A total of 121 voluntary pharmacists participated in the study. Over half (57.85%) of participants reported working in a retail setting. Only 14.05% had ever served a patient requesting Halal medications. When asked about awareness of Halal medications, only 4.13% were very aware. While 56.2% were familiar with dietary restrictions, only 1.65% were very aware of which medications to substitute if a patient cannot take a prescribed medication due to its ingredients and only 1.65% were aware of where to look to find alternative Halal medications. Over half of the participants were unaware of Halal pharmaceuticals, Haram ingredients, resources to utilize, or medications to use as an alternative.

Conclusion: Pharmacists are familiar with dietary restrictions due to medications derived from animal products but the majority are unaware of where to search for Halal medication alternatives, ingredients, or products. Resources are needed to make this information readily available. The more informed pharmacists are, the more likely they are to ask the right questions to ensure that patients’ religious beliefs are taken into consideration.

Type: Student Paper


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Received 2018-05-16
Accepted 2018-07-23
Published 2018-08-16
Pharmacy Practice & Practice-Based Research