Study: Physicians influence medication adherence

August 6, 2010

Patients are more likely to routinely take inhaled corticosteroids for asthma control when physicians kept close watch over their medication use and reviewed prescription information, according to research.

Patients are more likely to routinely take inhaled corticosteroids for asthma control when physicians kept close watch over their medication use and reviewed electronic prescription information, including how often patients fill their prescriptions and the estimated number of days each prescription would last, according to researchers at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

The study enrolled 193 Henry Ford primary care physicians. About half were randomly assigned to the intervention group, while the other half were assigned to the control group. Physicians in the intervention group used e-prescribing to track medication fills and refills, including estimates of the proportion of time that the patients took their medication. Researchers found adherence was significantly higher in the intervention group when the patient's physician elected to view detailed adherence information via the e-prescribing application.