Objectives To examine which interventions health care professionals use to support patients with taking medicines and their perceptions about the effectiveness of those actions. Design Cross-sectional multinational study Setting Online survey in Austria, Belgium, England, France, Germany, Hungary, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, and Switzerland. Participants 3196 comprising doctors (855), nurses (1047) and pharmacists (1294) currently registered and practising in primary care and community settings. Main outcome measures Primary outcome: Responses to the question ‘I ask patients if they have missed any doses of their medication’ for each profession and in each country. Secondary outcome: Responses to 50 items concerning healthcare professional behaviour to support patients with medication-taking for each profession and in each country. Results Approximately half of the healthcare professionals in the survey ask patients with long term conditions whether they have missed any doses of their medication on a regular basis. Pharmacists persistently report that they intervene less than the other two professions to support patients with medicines. No country effects were found for the primary outcome. Conclusions Healthcare professionals in Europe are limited in the extent to which they intervene to assist patients with long term conditions with medication adherence. This represents a missed opportunity to support people with prescribed treatment. These conclusions are based on the largest international survey to date of health care professionals’ management of medication adherence.
Bibliographical noteThe full text is also available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2015-009610
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