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Medication Adherence Pharmacy outreach program URI College of Pharmacy

What is Adherence?  Over 133 million Americans have a chronic health

condition! (Nearly 50%!)  Patients with chronic conditions are often prescribed

medications or must follow certain rules to manage their condition. 



Physical Therapy


What is Adherence?  Medication adherence is

making sure you are taking your medication… the right way – as directed by your doctor.

Why is adherence important?  Ensure proper blood levels  Prevent symptoms from coming back or worsening  Staying OUT of the hospital  Preventing side effects 

Taking too much medication can cause adverse effects

 Staying healthy and living a long, full life!

Who takes Prescription Medications?

ď‚— How Many Do you take? ď‚— Do you take them chronically (for the long term)?

Who Takes Prescription Medications? Prescription Medications in the United States 15%



No Medications One Medication One CHRONIC Med 2-3 CHRONIC Meds 4 + CHRONIC Meds

9% 42% of American adults take at least one chronic 14% medication – Nearly 101 million people!

Who takes their medications as directed?  Do you ALWAYS fill your prescriptions and pick up refills on time?

Do you skip doses – intentionally or unintentionally? 

Do you forget to take your pills?

Do you take your medications at the same time each day?

 Do you split your doses so you don’t have to use as much medication?

True or False  75% of Americans do not take their medications as



 One in Three medication-related hospitalizations

occur because that person did not take their medication as directed. TRUE  OVER 120,000 people die each year because they

did not take their medications as directed.


What are barriers to being adherent?  Being human! 

We all forget sometimes!

 Side effects of medications 

i.e. dry cough, dizziness, upset stomach, etc.

 Unclear directions 

i.e. Steroid inhalers for asthma

 Cost 

i.e. high copays, in the “donut hole”

The Script Your Future Campaign  National campaign  Promote awareness about medication adherence 

Patients, family, caregivers, and healthcare professionals

 Programs to support people with chronic c0nditions

and their caregivers. “Take back your future!” Don’t let chronic health problems take away your chance for a long, full life!

Tips to Stay Adherent  Take the pledge! 

Script your future pledge card

 Manage your medications!  Organize your medications!

Tips to Stay Adherent  Manage your medications! 

List your medications – Keep it up to date! Keep it with you!

What is the medication for?

How much do you take? When should you take it?

Share the information with your doctor/pharmacist

Tips to Stay Adherent ď‚— Organize your medications! ď‚— Automated refills/Mail order!

Tips to Stay Adherent  Cost 

If copays are too high, ask your doctor or pharmacist about switching to a generic medication or a less expensive alternative!

Ask your doctor for samples, coupons, or vouchers

Brown Bag It! - complete one-on-one review of medications with your pharmacist

Ask your doctor and pharmacist questions and stay informed on all of your medications

There are resources available!



Medication discount cards

Medigap – for donut hole coverage

Tricare – for veterans, etc.

Conclusion  Take your medications as directed! 

The easiest way to prevent hospitalizations, or worse 

 Medication adherence is important in order to

maximize your health and live a long, full life!  Managing, Organizing, and Reducing costs of

medications help to keep you adherent!

Thank You!

Pharmacy Outreach Program The University of Rhode Island College of Pharmacy 1-800-215-9001

Medication Adherence  
Medication Adherence