Insight

Pharmacists play a key role in improving patient drug adherence

At a time when technology is taking the place of human interaction, the pharmacist is often an underused step in the process of connecting the brand team to patients—especially with senior citizens. Patients should be asking their community pharmacists questions and pharmacists should be a support system for patients.

Patients are failing to take the medications prescribed to them and the consequences are far-reaching. Not only does this failure have a negative impact on the patient’s health, but avoidable emergency room, hospital and doctor visit costs burden payers and society.

In order to combat this epidemic and quell the frustrations felt by stakeholders, we need to understand the drivers of poor medication adherence. Patient-related factors that play a role in this failure to take medication include behaviors, attitudes, aptitude, comprehension and the need for support.

In an article for Pharmaceutical Commerce, we discussed that, at a time when technology is taking the place of human interaction, the pharmacist is often an underused step in the process of connecting the brand team to patients—especially with senior citizens. Patients should be asking their community pharmacists questions and pharmacists should be a support system for patients.

However, we’ve all waited in long lines while pharmacists quickly move from patient to patient, far too busy to converse or answer questions. For sustainable and scalable initiatives towards medication adherence, payers will need to pay for additional pharmacists and resources. Making these investments now will eventually prove worthy when stakeholders see a reduction in hospital costs and improved patient drug adherence.

For more insights related to the healthcare industry, visit our Healthcare & Life Sciences Institute, which provides an open forum for business leaders to share their perspectives, gain insight and develop approaches for handling today’s challenges within the industry.

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