This article details a study that was completed in order to study whether or not physicians truly understood how widespread the lack of adherence there was in their particular patient populations. Non adherence is a rampant problem in the elderly population who are the most common patients who have chronic diseases. Diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia require strong adherence in their therapies in order to achieve the most successful results, and patients can quickly slip out of their goal ranges for the management of their symptoms if they are not on top of taking their daily regimens. The focus of the study was to first determine the physicians’ personal perceptions of their populations’ adherence, and then compare them to the actual data of adherence that were provided by the statistical claims.
The study was completed by the distribution of surveys to primary care physicians in a Texan MD-PA plan that was covered by Medicare Part D. The questionnaire was given to these 226 doctors at quarterly meetings and they were asked questions along the line of what percentage of their patients did they believe were adherent in the medication regimens, what income bracket did the most adherent people come from, etc. The study concluded that primary care physicians were equally likely to both underestimate, or overestimate how adherent their population was.
Overall, I do not believe that this article is very important to the field of pharmacy. First off, this is just a qualitative survey that was given to the doctors, so the whole thing was based on personal opinions. Without a source of hard data, this study cannot prove much on its own. I also believe that adherence changes drastically based upon the environment, so completing this survey in only one health system would not provide a good overview for physicians’ opinions on adherence on the grand scale.
J Manag Care Spec Pharm, 2016 Mar;22(3):305-312.