78% of Spaniards (and 83% of those over 63 years of age) opposes the possibility of replacing the paper leaflet of medicines for information on it in an electronic version, as contemplated in the draft European pharmaceutical legislation, currently under discussion.
This is what a survey carried out by the Organization of consumers and users (OCU) between the months of June and July, which shows the importance given to the prospectus on paper. 80% of Spaniards say they read it when taking the medicine for the first timeand up to 88% when taking it on their own initiative (self-medication).
The leaflet is usually consulted to find out about the indications of the active ingredient, but also about possible unwanted effects and contraindications. Even if after taking a medication you suffer some kind of non-serious side effect, 44% read it again.
The OCUtogether with the rest of the consumer associations of the Euroconsumers group in Italy, Belgium and Portugal, are favorable to the use of a QR code that contains the prospect’s informationbut in no case to replace the prospectus on paper.
The organization is aware that in some Spanish hospitals the change has already been implemented experimentally with some drugs for hospital use. Also consider that this environment is ideal because patients do not need to consult the package insert.
But remember this fact Statistics National Institute (INE): eight out of ten people over the age of 55 lack digital skills basic, and for this reason he wonders what would happen in the case of patients who could only consult the leaflet in electronic format at home.