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Title: Vitamin D in the older population : a study of Maltese doctors’ knowledge and management
Authors: Bonnici, Maria
Buttigieg, Sacha
Abdilla, Stefania
Ferry, Peter
Keywords: Vitamin D deficiency
Vitamin D in human nutrition -- Malta
Vitamin D -- Health aspects
Older people -- Nutrition -- Malta
Issue Date: 2020-12
Publisher: University of Malta. Medical School
Citation: Bonnici, M., Buttigieg, S., Abdilla, S., & Ferry, P. (2020). Vitamin D in the older population : a study of Maltese doctors’ knowledge and management. Malta Medical Journal, 32(3), 44-55.
Abstract: Background: Vitamin D deficiency is reaching pandemic levels in Europe. It is important for musculoskeletal health and doctors are a crucial source of information to their patients. This study is the first of its kind in Malta, in its attempt to assess knowledge, practices and attitudes of Maltese doctors with regard to vitamin D in the elderly population.
Methods: Cross-sectional survey of 847 Maltese doctors. A survey instrument was adapted and the online link was distributed via e-mail and post. Descriptive statistics were used and maximum knowledge (68 points) and management (46 points) scores were devised from the literature. The Pearson correlation coefficient was used to find the relationship between the knowledge and management scores, and the ANOVA test was used to compare the mean scores between several independent groups clustered by speciality, training, experience, and confidence levels.
Results: The final population was of 138 participants (7.4% margin of error assuming 95% confidence level). The mean knowledge and management scores were 33.22 and 23.64 respectively. A positive correlation was found between the two (p <0.05) and doctors who felt very confident in their knowledge tend to score higher (p =0.010).
Conclusions: Health promotion by Maltese doctors is on the increase, however 90.6% still believe there is a lack of awareness on vitamin D among doctors. Moreover, this study highlights some gaps in knowledge on vitamin D which could be effectively targeted with the development of a national clinical guideline and post-graduate lectures.
Appears in Collections:MMJ, Volume 32, Issue 3
MMJ, Volume 32, Issue 3
Scholarly Works - FacM&SMed

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