Medicines are important commodities and their use in households continues to generate
interest. In developing countries, medicines form about 30-40% of health expenditure. Most of
these medicines are bought by individuals for self-medication and rarely bought on
prescription. Yet as chemical products their uncontrolled use could be dangerous. It is therefore
important to understand how individuals use medicines especially at the household level, and
how the context influences their action, taking into consideration their beliefs, practices and
The aim of the study is to investigate self-medication among households of different socioeconomic categories in Accra with a view to understanding how the household context
influences the use of medicine.
Four residential areas were purposively selected and sixteen households were identified in 4
distinct communities in Accra. Through the use of a unique bi-monthly monitoring tool, data
was collected on medicines used by households every fifteen days over a period of five months
which was enriched by interviews with mothers of these households. Interviews were
transcribed and analyzed thematically together with data from the bi-monthly monitoring tool.
Results from the data show that self-medication is very high among households and cuts across
all social classes; the elderly are the greatest self medicators, a practice which is encouraged
by long waiting times at hospitals, easy access to community medicines outlets, knowledge of
prescription patterns of doctors and advertisements. Medicines most used for self-medication
include vitamins, food supplements, appetite stimulants and blood tonics. Self-medication is a
reality with negative public health consequences such as resistance and over-dosing that must
CDR, C (2021). “I AM NOW A DOCTOR”: SELF-MEDICATION PRACTICES AMONG HOUSEHOLDS IN ACCRA. Afribary.com: Retrieved April 11, 2021, from https://afribary.com/works/i-am-now-a-doctor-self-medication-practices-among-households-in-accra
Coalition, CDR. "“I AM NOW A DOCTOR”: SELF-MEDICATION PRACTICES AMONG HOUSEHOLDS IN ACCRA" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 02 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/i-am-now-a-doctor-self-medication-practices-among-households-in-accra . Accessed 11 Apr. 2021.
Coalition, CDR. "“I AM NOW A DOCTOR”: SELF-MEDICATION PRACTICES AMONG HOUSEHOLDS IN ACCRA". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 02 Apr. 2021. Web. 11 Apr. 2021. < https://afribary.com/works/i-am-now-a-doctor-self-medication-practices-among-households-in-accra >.
Coalition, CDR. "“I AM NOW A DOCTOR”: SELF-MEDICATION PRACTICES AMONG HOUSEHOLDS IN ACCRA" Afribary.com (2021). Accessed April 11, 2021. https://afribary.com/works/i-am-now-a-doctor-self-medication-practices-among-households-in-accra