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Understanding ethno-cultural differences in cardiac medication adherence behavior: a Canadian study

Authors King-Shier K, Quan H, Mather C, Chong E, LeBlanc P, Khan N

Received 24 March 2018

Accepted for publication 28 June 2018

Published 7 September 2018 Volume 2018:12 Pages 1737—1747


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Kathryn King-Shier,1,2 Hude Quan,2 Charles Mather,3 Elaine Chong,4 Pamela LeBlanc,1 Nadia Khan5

1Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada; 2Department of Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada; 3Department of Anthropology, Faculty of Arts, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada; 4Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada; 5Division of General Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Background: There are ethno-cultural differences in cardiac patients’ adherence to medications. It is unclear why this occurs. We thus aimed to generate an in-depth understanding about the decision-making process and potential ethno-cultural differences, of white, Chinese, and south Asian cardiac patients when making the decision to adhere to a medication regimen.
Methods: A hierarchical descriptive decision-model was generated based on previous qualitative work, pilot tested, and revised to be more parsimonious. The final model was examined using a novel group of 286 cardiac patients, using their self-reported adherence as the reference. Thereafter, each node was examined to identify decision-making constructs that might be more applicable to white, Chinese or south Asian groups.
Results: Non-adherent south Asians were most likely to identify a lack of receipt of detailed medication information, and less confidence and trust in the health care system and health care professionals. Both Chinese and south Asian participants were less likely to be adherent when they had doubts about western medicine (eg, the effects and safety of the medication). Being able to afford the cost of medications was associated with increased adherence. Being away from home reduced the likelihood of adherence in each group. The overall model had 67.1% concordance with the participants’ initial self-reported adherence, largely due to participants’ overreporting adherence.
Conclusion: These identified elements of the decision-making process are generally not considered in traditionally used medication adherence questionnaires. Importantly these elements are modifiable and ought to be the focus of both interventions and measurement of medication adherence.

Keywords: cardiac, descriptive decision-modeling, ethno-culture, medication adherence

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