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Understanding compliance issues for daily self-injectable treatment in ambulatory care settings

Authors Meryl Brod, Matthew Rousculp, Ann Cameron

Published 6 April 2008 Volume 2008:2 Pages 129—136


Meryl Brod1, Matthew Rousculp2, Ann Cameron2

1The Brod Group, Mill Valley, California, USA; 2Health Outcomes, Eli Lilly and Company, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Background: The challenge of understanding factors influencing compliance with injectable treatments is critical as injectable biologics/medications become more common.

Objective: Understanding compliance issues for long term self-injectable treatments, using a chronic condition (osteoporosis) as a model.

Research design: A qualitative study to generate hypotheses regarding compliance issues for self-injectable treatments. Semi-structured interview guides were developed and data collected from patients and clinical experts. Findings were analyzed for common themes and a conceptual model of the compliance impact of self-injectable treatments generated.

Subjects: Six physicians (Rheumatology, Internal Medicine, and Endocrinology) and 22 patients (14% never began treatment, 23% had filled at least one prescription but discontinued treatment, and 63% were currently on treatment) were interviewed.

Results: Physician and patient factors influenced the compliance process at four distinct timepoints: pre-treatment, time treatment recommended, short-term, and long-term. Physician factors that influenced patients’ persistence were knowledge about treatment, patient-training resources, and clinical profile/efficacy evaluations. For patients, motivation level, physician message, and clinical profile were key. Logistical issues, minor side effects and injection site issues influenced adherence but not persistence.

Conclusions: Compliance is a multifactorial, dynamic process. Both physician and patient factors influence compliance at different points in the process.

Keywords: osteoporosis, self-injectable treatments, compliance, persistence, adherence

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