Physicians don't adequately monitor patients' medication adherence

Patients' non-adherence to prescribed medication costs the U.S. health care system an estimated $290 billion annually and can lead to poor clinical outcomes, increased hospitalizations and higher mortality.

In an effort to understand the extent to which feel responsible for their patients' , UCLA researchers and colleagues conducted focus-group discussions with providers and recorded out-patient office visits with 100 patients taking a total of 410 medications. They also examined how adherence discussions were initiated between providers and patients.

The researchers found that providers felt responsible for assessing and addressing adherence but believed patients were ultimately responsible. The researchers also found that physician–patient interactions were conducted in a way that might address adherence for 62 percent of the 410 medications; these interactions included simple inquiries about adherence for 31.5 percent of the medications but in-depth questions about adherence for only 4.3 percent of the medications. Patients spontaneously disclosed their non-adherence in 51 percent of 39 identified instances of non-adherence.

More information: The research is published in the June issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Related Stories

Irregular medication use puts seniors at risk for falling

date May 19, 2010

Older adults increase their chances of falling by not taking their medications as directed, according to an article in the latest edition of the Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological and Medical Sciences (Volume 65A, N ...

Recommended for you

India's bidi workers suffer for 1,000-a-day habit

date 12 hours ago

Zainab Begum Alvi and her band of young helpers hunch over baskets filled with tobacco flakes and dried leaves, trying to roll a thousand dirt-cheap cigarettes a day at the behest of India's powerful bidi barons.

Key to better sex ed: Focus on gender & power

date Apr 17, 2015

A new analysis by Population Council researcher Nicole Haberland provides powerful evidence that sexuality and HIV education programs addressing gender and power in intimate relationships are far more likely ...

Journal tackles aging policy issues raised by White House

date Apr 17, 2015

In anticipation of the forthcoming 2015 White House Conference on Aging (WHCoA), The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) has produced a special issue of The Gerontologist that outlines a vision for older adults' econom ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.