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Effect of pharmaceutical care on medication adherence of patients newly prescribed insulin therapy: a randomized controlled study

Authors Xin C, Xia Z, Jiang C, Lin M, Li G

Received 11 March 2015

Accepted for publication 26 April 2015

Published 18 June 2015 Volume 2015:9 Pages 797—802


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Naifeng Liu

Chuanwei Xin, Zhongni Xia, Cheng Jiang, Mengmeng Lin, Gonghua Li

Department of Pharmacy, Tongde Hospital of Zhejiang Province, Zhejiang Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Hangzhou, People’s Republic of China

Background: Poor adherence to insulin medications leads to a high rate of hospital admissions and poor health-related quality of life in the patients with diabetes mellitus. However, few strategies are effective and acceptable in improving medication adherence. The objectives of this study are to evaluate the effectiveness of pharmaceutical care by clinical pharmacists on medication adherence of patients newly prescribed insulin therapy.
Patients and methods: A single-center, prospective randomized controlled study (pharmaceutical care group and control group) was performed from January 1, 2014 to December 30, 2014. Medication adherence was measured at the baseline and up to 12 months with Morisky–Green test and computerized dispensed medication history. The absolute change in A1c vs baseline, the change of hospitalization between two groups, and the number of patients to achieve Chinese Diabetes Society (CDS) goals at the baseline were the main outcome measures.
Results: A total of 322 patients were included in the study. After the 12-month interventions, significant improvements in the medication adherence were verified for the pharmaceutical care group according to the Morisky–Green test (50.8% of adherent patients at baseline vs 80.7% of adherent patients after 12-month interventions; P<0.01) and the computerized dispensed medication history (55.2% at baseline vs 83.3% after interventions; P<0.01), while no significant changes were verified in the control group. After follow-up, the pharmaceutical care group showed a greater percent change in A1c (2.2±0.4 vs 0.8±0.2, P<0.05).
Conclusion: This study provides new evidence from a randomized controlled trial on the beneficial effect of pharmaceutical care to enhance adherence in patients newly prescribed insulin therapy. Intervention by the pharmacist might potentially improve clinical outcomes on reducing hemoglobin A1c and enhancing the number of patients fulfilling the Chinese Diabetes Society goal on hemoglobin A1c.

Keywords: medication adherence, pharmaceutical care, clinical pharmacists, insulin

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