Non- Adherence– the hidden epidemic


Globally, millions of medications prescriptions are issued every day. But the majority people do not take their medications as prescribed. As a result, it causes huge amount of unnecessary physical and emotional suffering, financial loss, and premature deaths.

This hidden epidemic ” Non-Adherence” or call it “the silent killer” requires more attention at time when world stage is taken over by SARS-CoVid

Table of Contents

What is non-adherence?

Non-Adherence refers to the failure or refusal of a person to follow a prescribed or recommended course of treatment, medication, or lifestyle change. It can refer to any situation where a person does not comply with a recommended course of action, whether intentional or unintentional.

Non-adherence can have serious consequences for the individual’s health, as well as for the effectiveness of the treatment or intervention being prescribed. Common reasons for non-adherence include forgetfulness, lack of understanding about the treatment, fear of side effects, and cost. Healthcare providers may work with patients to identify and address any barriers to adherence in order to improve health outcomes

What are major  factor contributors to non-adherence ?

There are many factors that can contribute to non-adherence, and they can be grouped into several categories:

  1. Patient-related factors: Patients may forget to take their medication, have difficulty following complex dosing schedules, or experience side effects that cause discomfort or interfere with daily activities. They may also have beliefs or attitudes that make them hesitant to take medication or follow recommended lifestyle changes.
  2. Healthcare system-related factors: Patients may have difficulty accessing healthcare services or medications, experience long wait times or inconvenient scheduling, or feel that their healthcare providers do not listen to or address their concerns.
  3. Treatment-related factors: Patients may have difficulty tolerating side effects or experience a lack of efficacy with a treatment, leading to frustration and discouragement.
  4. Socioeconomic factors: Patients may face financial barriers to accessing healthcare services or medications, have difficulty accessing transportation to medical appointments, or have limited access to healthy food options or safe environments for physical activity.
  5. Condition-related factors: Patients may have difficulty managing chronic conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension, due to the complexity of treatment regimens and the need for ongoing lifestyle changes.

Effective management of non-adherence requires addressing the specific factors that are contributing to the problem, which may involve a multidisciplinary approach that includes the patient, healthcare providers, and caregivers.

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