Awareness and use of medication management services in relation to medication adherence prior to hospitalisation among older adults in Regional Australia
Background Ageing is associated with changes in physiology, functional ability, declined in cognition and multiple co-morbidities. Alterations in pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic aspects also occur. Medications can improve the quality of life in people with multiple co-morbidities; polypharmacy and ageing could increase risks of medication misadventures and adverse events leading to hospital admissions. Medication management services (MedsCheck, Diabetes MedsCheck and Home Medication Review) were implemented in Australia to: increase patients’ knowledge about their medicines, increase patients’ confidence in using their medicines, and reduce avoidable hospital admissions. Objective This study aims to investigate patients’ awareness, understanding and uptake of medication management services in relation to medication adherence. Setting Study was conducted at the Maryborough hospital, Queensland, Australia. Method This was a questionnaire based prospective study. A questionnaire was developed based on the questions used in the evaluation of the MedsCheck and Diabetes MedsCheck pilot program. Main outcome/Result We identified 243 participants of which 198 patients agreed to participate. Of the participants, 68.1% were taking more than five different medications a day and 34.3% of participants were taking more than 10 different medications a day. Those that consumed five or more doses of medication a day constitutes 72%. Only 3% had accessed medication management services prior to hospital admission. Many of participants (76.3%) noted that they had issues with different generics/brands of medication and only 23.2% of participants stated that they had a good understanding of drug–drug interactions. Conclusion Hospitalised patients are unaware of medication management services that could reduce frequency of re-hospitalisation. Community and hospital pharmacists can play a major role increasing patients’ awareness of the availability of these services.
KeywordsAdherence Australia Hospitalisation Management Medication review
Special thanks to Mr. Glen Tapley, the Director of Pharmacy at the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service (Fraser Coast) for approving the time needed to complete this project.
Conflicts of interest
Authors K.P.L. and A.D.A declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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