Coping with Prescription Medication Costs: a Cross-sectional Look at Strategies Used and Associations with the Physical and Psychosocial Health of Individuals with Arthritis

ArticleinAnnals of Behavioral Medicine 44(2):236-47 · June 2012with6 Reads
Impact Factor: 4.20 · DOI: 10.1007/s12160-012-9380-7 · Source: PubMed


    Prescription medication costs increase financial burden, often leading individuals to engage in intentional nonadherence. Little is known about what specific medication cost-coping strategies individuals with arthritis employ.
    The purposes of this study are (1) to identify characteristics of individuals with arthritis who self-report prescription medication cost-coping strategies and (2) to examine the association between medication cost-coping strategies and health status.
    Seven hundred twenty-nine people self-reporting arthritis and prescription medication use completed a telephone survey. Adjusted regression models examined medication cost-coping strategies and five health status outcomes.
    Participants reported engaging in cost-coping strategies due to medication costs. Those borrowing money had worse psychosocial health and greater disability; those with increasing credit card debt reported worse physical functioning, self-rated health, and greater helplessness. Medication underuse was associated with worse psychosocial health, greater disability, and depressive symptoms.
    Individuals with arthritis use multiple strategies to cope with medication costs, and these strategies are associated with adverse physical and psychosocial health status.