Socio-economic and behavioral determinants of prescription and non-prescription medicine use: the case of Turkey

Özen, İlhan Can
Background Demographic and socio-economic factors determine pharmaceutical health care utilization for individuals. Prescription and non-prescription medicine use are expected to have different determinants. Even though prescription and non-prescription medicine use is being well researched for developed countries, there are only a few studies for developing countries. Objectives This paper aims to analyze the socio-economic and individual characteristics that determine the use of prescription and non-prescription medicine. We examine the issue for the specific case of Turkey since Turkey's health system has undertaken significant changes in the last two decades and especially after 2003 with the "Health Transformation Programme". Methods Data from the nationally representative "Health Survey" are used in the analysis. The data set covers the 2008-2016 period with two-year intervals. Pooled multivariate logistic regression is employed to identify the underlying determinants of prescription and non-prescription medicine use. Results When compared to 2008, non-prescription medicine use decreases until 2012, however, an increasing trend appears after 2012. For prescription medicine use, a decreasing trend emerges after 2012. Findings from the marginal effects indicate that for non-prescription medicine use, the highest effect stems from the health status. For prescriptionmedicine use, the highest marginal effects arise from age, health and employment status indicating the importance of the need and predisposing factors. Conclusion Decreasing non-prescription medicine use largely depends on easier access to health care service utilization. Although having a health insurance has a positive relationship with prescription medicine use, there is still a problem for individuals living a rural area and heaving a lower income level since they are more likely to use non-prescription medicine.

Citation Formats
S. ÖZTÜRK, D. BAŞAR, İ. C. Özen, and A. Ö. ÇİFTÇİ, “Socio-economic and behavioral determinants of prescription and non-prescription medicine use: the case of Turkey,” DARU, Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, vol. 27, no. 2, pp. 735–742, 2019, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: