To support healthcare professionals in improving adherence, a series of articles has been developped to provide digestible learning resources around the role behavior science plays in adherence, including practical insights relating to therapy areas. The articles provide a useful companion to a series of masterclasses where the subjects of adherence and behavioral science are explored in more depth.

Latest articles

Medication adherence in patients with type 2 diabetes: barriers & interventions

Patients suffering from symptom-less chronic diseases are susceptible to non-adherence behavior toward their medication and lifestyle recommendations, especially if they are associated with other comorbidities. Type-2 Diabetes (T2D) is a metabolic disorder and is frequently associated with other co-morbodities like obesity and hypertension. These patients are predisposed to develop cardiovascular diseases, diabetic retinopathy, diabetic neuropathy,…

Cardio Metabolic

What is medication compliance?

It has become even more crucial to focus on the underlying causes of illnesses as well as medication compliance to reduce the overall global illness burden. Medication compliance vs. adherence1-3 The terms compliance and adherence are often used interchangeably, however, there is only a very thin line between adherence and compliance. Compliance can be defined…

General Topics
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Medication adherence in adolescents – challenges and interventions

Adherence to treatment in adolescents is a major challenge for doctors and healthcare professionals. Adherence rates in the adolescent population vary widely from 10% to 89% for chronic diseases2. There are many repercussions of low adherence in teens, with obvious consequences for themselves, their families, and the health care system. For chronic conditions, low adherence…

General Topics
Physician counseling a patient

Methods of behavior change in medication non-adherence

Behavior is defined as the action or set of activities in response to an internal or external stimulus2. Behavior is a key risk factor for individual and public health in multiple ways. It impacts disease prevention, seeking medical attention, adhering to the prescribed treatment, and also delivery of healthcare for several diseases and also for…

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Female eating healthy

Mobile apps for enhancing adherence to chronic diseases

Chronic diseases can last for decades and require a disciplined approach to medication administration plus a lifestyle change. Among the most common chronic ailments are cardiovascular disease, diabetes type 2, respiratory diseases (asthma), and cancer3. Globally, one-third of adults suffer from one or multiple chronic conditions. Three in five global deaths are due to diabetes,…

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Mother playing with son in the living room

Pharmacogenomics: A personalized response to medication non-adherence

Pharmacogenetics or the genetic variations in the human population giving rise to a variable drug response is well-known in clinical research1. The quest for personalized medicine based on pharmacogenomics using an individual’s genetic content has gained traction since the completion of the first draft of the human genome project2,3. Pharmacogenomics-based personalized prescriptions can help in…

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Physician counseling a patient

Interventions to tackle medication non-adherence

Medication adherence, or the extent to which patients take medications as prescribed, is remarkably low and it has been reported that typically, patients adhere to about 50% of prescribed medications1. Factors causing medication non-adherence are varied and can be grouped into patient-related, therapy-related, and healthcare system-related1. Some of the common reasons are forgetfulness, adverse effects,…

General Topics
Healthcare practitioners in conversation with a patient.

Power of algorithm: Identifying high-risk non-adherent patient groups

Non-adherence to medication is a major challenge to treatment success and a significant burden on the healthcare system1-3. The existing interventions are based on retrospective measurements of non-adherence in patients already undergoing treatment and are therefore limited in improving future medication adherence4. Predictive analytics can help in identifying potentially high-risk non-adherent patient groups at the…

General Topics
HCPs in deep discussion while pointing to an iPad

Looking into the Crystal-ball: Advances in technology for improving adherence

Current technological interventions focus either on reminding the patient or on tracking the pill removal from the packaging. However, they do not address the actual act of taking the medicine1. The ingestible sensors or trackable pills have marked a technological revolution in the area of medication adherence. In addition, motion-sensor-based wearables are likely will mark…

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Measuring adherence – an “Achilles heel” in medication adherence

Adherence measurement is a complex task, which can be performed through various direct and indirect methods Each method has its advantages and limitations with no universal consensus on a gold standard technique The use of combinatorial methods might offer the best solution. Further, there is a need to optimize techniques for different populations as well…

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Technological advancements and innovations to improve medication adherence

Medication non-adherence is an important challenge that leads to suboptimal treatment outcomes1. Using innovative technologies in interventions can help in combating this issue. Smart interventions specifically concerning packaging, monitoring, record keeping, and reminding medication are now available and can significantly improve patients’ medication adherence2. Medication adherence defined as the extent to which a patient’s behavior…

General Topics
Recovery is a collective process. Awareness and timely help are important.

Challenges to medication adherence for morbidities during menopause

•   The significant milestone of menopause is associated with the risk of weight gain, poor bone health, chronic diseases, and cancers1,6,9, 11, 12 •   Medication adherence during menopause is poor. The primary barriers are enhanced menopause symptoms and multimorbidity fuelled by poor psychological health17, 20, 24. Risk of morbidities during menopause Menopause is a natural…

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Healthcare practitioners: A potential springboard for adherence success

Healthcare practitioners (HCPs) are uniquely positioned to deliver medication adherence interventions1. Communication between HCPs and patient is inadequate2. Enabling HCPs with the required skill-set is pivotal1. Improving adherence to medications requires a collaborative team effort from health care professionals3,4. Optimum disease management requires taking medication in the required dosage at the right time as advised…

General Topics
Healthcare practitioners absorbed in a discussion

Prescription costs are key to non-adherence: Can generics help?

Prescription costs are a potent driver for non-adherence to medication1-3. Generic substitution of prescriptions is key to lowering the out-of-pocket costs of medications4-6. Distrust in generic medications needs to be addressed to encourage their usage and reduce cost-related non-adherence7.   Cost-related non-adherence (CRNA): Cost of medicines is an overriding issue for adherence to the treatment…

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Non-adherence to immunosuppressants in organ transplant patients

Non-adherence to medication remains a barrier to long-term graft survival in the life of solid organ transplant patients1,2. The major risk factors for non-adherence include income, complex regimen, employment status, minority race, illness perception, and mental health2,3.  Multicomponent interventions tailored to the need of patients appear to be most effective in lowering non-adherence to immunosuppressants4.…

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Severe psychiatric disorders: causes & interventions for medication non-adherence

The key challenges to medication adherence for patients with severe psychotic disorders include -medication side effects, complexity, and duration as well as patient’s insights, beliefs, social stigma, and lack of support1. Psychoeducation, Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), and motivational interviewing are the typically used strategies to improve adherence2. The digital medicine system is a novel and…

Central Nervous System
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Adherence in Asthma – a victim of the episodic nature of the disease

Asthma is characterized by its episodic and unpredictable nature1. Inhalation therapy – the standard treatment of care – is not optimally adhered to by patients. The key barriers are unawareness, misconceptions, unaffordability, inaccessibility, and associated stigma1,2. Tracking adherence in asthma is also a considerable challenge. However, the upcoming smart technologies like the use of Smart-inhalers…

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Oral therapies for cancer: a boon for treatment and bane for adherence

Oral therapies have revolutionized cancer treatment with their ease of administration. However, they are prone to non-adherence as drugs are administered by patients away from health care settings1. Cancer therapies are now akin to treatments for chronic ailments, lasting for several years. Therefore, the medication adherence barriers that pertain to chronic disease have become significant…

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