Medication Adherence: 5 Key Tips to Follow
Are you one of the 7 million people in Australia with a chronic illness? Do you struggle to keep up with a complex medication regimen? You’re not alone: it’s not uncommon to mix up doses or even skip them altogether. This can lead to negative health outcomes, higher costs, and prevent any clinical improvement despite your treating GP’s best efforts. In fact, studies show that almost half of Australians with chronic health conditions don’t take their medicine as prescribed.
But don’t worry, there are ways to improve your medication adherence and better manage your condition. Let’s dive in!
Medication Adherence 101
Medication adherence refers to the extent to which you take your medicine as directed by your doctor. It’s an important aspect of managing your health and can greatly impact your quality of life, health outcomes, and overall health costs. To get the best results, research suggests that you should aim for an adherence rate of 80% or higher.
Barriers to Adherence
Medication non-adherence is becoming a growing concern in Australia, with various barriers that make it difficult to stick to your medication plan. Some of these barriers include:
- Adverse effects of medication
- The cost of medications
- Lack of health literacy
- Having multiple pharmacies or not having access to a pharmacy that offers home delivery & Dose Administration Aid packing (Webster Pack or alternative)
Overcoming Barriers to Adherence
The key to improving medication adherence is to identify and address the barriers that are preventing you from taking your medicine as directed. Here are some tips that can help:
- Communicate with Your Healthcare Team
Take the time to educate yourself by asking your healthcare provider questions about your condition, dosage instructions, and any other concerns. If you experience side effects, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor or pharmacist about them. They may be able to prescribe alternatives or adjust your dosage.
- Overcome Cost Concerns
If the cost of your medication is a barrier, talk to your doctor or pharmacist about alternative options or assistance plans offered by pharmaceutical companies.
- Use a Pill Organiser or Dose Administration Aid (DAA)
If you have a complex medication regimen, a pill organiser can help keep you on track. A dose administration aid (DAA) is a type of pill organiser that helps manage your medicine according to the prescribed schedule, so you never miss a dose. There are many alternatives to the traditional Webster Pack
- Establish a Routine and Keep Medications Within Reach
Taking your medicine at the same time every day can help make it a habit, and keeping your medications close by can help ensure that you never miss a dose. Consider keeping them near your dinner table or bedside table.
- Use Reminders
Use mobile apps, alarms, or written notes to remind yourself when it’s time to take your medication. You can include important information like your medication list, dosage, and any other instructions. Don’t forget to set reminders for repeat prescriptions and appointments with your doctor.
Let SimpleDose Sort, pack and deliver Your Medications & Vitamins
Looking for the easiest way to stay on top of your medication regimen? SimpleDose is here to help. As a reliable, PBS-certified online pharmacy in Australia, our pharmacists will coordinate with your doctor for monthly prescription repeats, so you never run out of your medicine. Plus, we provide a 28-day supply of medication in convenient packaging, so you can stay focused on your health instead of running to the pharmacy every week.
Sign up today and let SimpleDose help simplify your medication routine!