Pharmacist telemonitoring of antidepressant use: Effects on pharmacist-patient collaboration

Department of Pharmacy Practice, School of Pharmacy, Northeastern University, 206 Mugar Life Sciences Building, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
Journal of the American Pharmacists Association: JAPhA (Impact Factor: 1.24). 05/2005; 45(3):344-53. DOI: 10.1331/1544345054003732
Source: PubMed


To explore the impact of telephone-based education and monitoring by community pharmacists on multiple outcomes of pharmacist-patient collaboration.
A randomized, controlled, unblinded, mixed experimental design.
Eight Wisconsin community pharmacies within a large managed care organization.
A total of 63 patients presenting new antidepressant prescriptions to their community pharmacies.
Patients were randomized to receive either three monthly telephone calls from pharmacists providing pharmacist-guided education and monitoring (PGEM) or usual pharmacist's care. Usual care is defined as that education and monitoring which pharmacists may typically provide patients at the study pharmacies.
Patient's frequency of feedback with the pharmacist, antidepressant knowledge, antidepressant beliefs, antidepressant adherence at 3 and 6 months, improvement in depression symptoms, and orientation toward treatment progress.
Of the 60 patients who completed the study, 28 received PGEM and 32 received usual pharmacist's care. Results showed that PGEM had a significant and positive effect on patient feedback, knowledge, medication beliefs, and perceptions of progress. There were no significant group differences in patient adherence or symptoms at 3 months; however, PGEM patients who completed the protocol missed fewer doses than did the usual care group at 6 months (P < or = .05).
Antidepressant telemonitoring by community pharmacists can significantly and positively affect patient feedback and collaboration with pharmacists. Longer-term studies with larger samples are needed to assess the generalizability of findings. Future research also needs to explore additional ways to improve clinical outcomes.

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Available from: Bonnie L Svarstad, Mar 01, 2014
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    • "In 38% (11/29) of the studies a change in medication adherence was not seen.17-20,26,27,29,31,35,43,47 In 24% (7/29) of the studies, an inadequate sample size to detect differences in adherence was identified as a limitation.19,24,25,28,29,35,43 The use of self-reported medication adherence was also problematic as baseline medication adherence was frequently higher than expected (patients often overestimate their adherence).22,26,28,29,35,43 "
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    ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT Objective: To describe the education, research, practice, and policy related to pharmacist interventions to improve medication adherence in community settings in the United States.Methods: Authors used MEDLINE and International Pharmaceutical Abstracts (since 1990) to identify community and ambulatory pharmacy intervention studies which aimed to improve medication adherence. The authors also searched the primary literature using Ovid to identify studies related to the pharmacy teaching of medication adherence. The bibliographies of relevant studies were reviewed in order to identify additional literature. We searched the tables of content of three US pharmacy education journals and reviewed the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy website for materials on teaching adherence principles. Policies related to medication adherence were identified based on what was commonly known to the authors from professional experience, attendance at professional meetings, and pharmacy journals.Results: Research and Practice: 29 studies were identified: 18 randomized controlled trials; 3 prospective cohort studies; 2 retrospective cohort studies; 5 case-controlled studies; and one other study. There was considerable variability in types of interventions and use of adherence measures. Many of the interventions were completed by pharmacists with advanced clinical backgrounds and not typical of pharmacists in community settings. The positive intervention effects had either decreased or not been sustained after interventions were removed. Although not formally assessed, in general, the average community pharmacy did not routinely assess and/or intervene on medication adherence. Education: National pharmacy education groups support the need for pharmacists to learn and use adherence-related skills. Educational efforts involving adherence have focused on students’ awareness of adherence barriers and communication skills needed to engage patients in behavioral change. Policy: Several changes in pharmacy practice and national legislation have provided pharmacists opportunities to intervene and monitor medication adherence. Some of these changes have involved the use of technologies and provision of specialized services to improve adherence. Conclusions: Researchers and practitioners need to evaluate feasible and sustainable models for pharmacists in community settings to consistently and efficiently help patients better use their medications and improve their health outcomes.
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    • "For example, the proxy measures of adherence varied between studies (n = 10). Three studies used the medication possession ratios [20,27,59], while others measured the proportion of patients continuing treatment [33,38,42,43,67,68,70]. The variability in measures of adherence and infrequent reporting of this important outcome in part reflects the well-known methodological challenges in the measurement of adherence [77]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Managed care organizations use a variety of strategies to reduce the cost and improve the quality of medication use. The effectiveness of such policies is not well understood. The objective of this research was to update a previous systematic review of interventions, published between 1966 and 2001, to improve the quality and efficiency of medication use in the US managed care setting. We searched MEDLINE and EMBASE for publications from July 2001 to January 2007 describing interventions targeting drug use conducted in the US managed care setting. We categorized studies by intervention type and adequacy of research design using commonly accepted criteria. We summarized the outcomes of well-controlled strategies and documented the significance and magnitude of effects for key study outcomes. We identified 164 papers published during the six-year period. Predominant strategies were: educational interventions (n = 20, including dissemination of educational materials, and group or one-to-one educational outreach); monitoring and feedback (n = 22, including audit/feedback and computerized monitoring); formulary interventions (n = 66, including tiered formulary and patient copayment); collaborative care involving pharmacists (n = 15); and disease management with pharmacotherapy as a primary focus (n = 41, including care for depression, asthma, and peptic ulcer disease). Overall, 51 studies met minimum criteria for methodological adequacy. Effective interventions included one-to-one academic detailing, computerized alerts and reminders, pharmacist-led collaborative care, and multifaceted disease management. Further, changes in formulary tier-design and related increases in copayments were associated with reductions in medication use and increased out-of-pocket spending by patients. The dissemination of educational materials alone had little or no impact, while the impact of group education was inconclusive. There is good evidence for the effectiveness of several strategies in changing drug use in the managed care environment. However, little is known about the cost-effectiveness of these interventions. Computerized alerts showed promise in improving short-term outcomes but little is known about longer-term outcomes. Few well-designed, published studies have assessed the potential negative clinical effects of formulary-related interventions despite their widespread use. However, some evidence suggests increases in cost sharing reduce access to essential medicines for chronic illness.
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