4 Tips for a Successful Medication Adherence Program

Medication Adherence Patient Engagement Patient Outcomes

For healthcare organizations, designing an effective medication adherence program to support patients can be easier said than done. According to AllazoHealth’s William Grambley, CEO, and Linda Schultz, Chief Customer and Clinical Officer, keeping these tips in mind can help.

Focus on patient-centricity

Design your program around the patient. What is the one action, or set of actions, that the patients in your program need to take? Are you focusing on script abandonment, getting the patient to do consistent refills, or even a clinical goal? Every communication should have a clear call to action.

Instead of an intervention that prompts, ‘Remember to refill your prescription,’ or, ‘Your prescription is nearly due,’ offer a direct action that a patient can take right then and there. For example, if a prescription refill reminder text or email is sent, it should feature a refill button that the patient can click and follow through with immediately. Ease is key.

Setting realistic medication adherence goals

Understand what your goals are, where you are at presently, and where you will need to be to achieve them. “We’ve spent a lot of time thinking about medication initiation and adherence,” Grambley says. “There are many reasons a patient may be non-adherent.”

While your goal could be to fill every script written, extend the length of therapy, or something else there’s a big difference in designing a program to ensure a patient is starting and staying on prescribed medication for a month, compared with being on medication for the rest of their life.

“There are lots of ways to measure adherence, and there are lots of intermediate steps on the way to lifelong medication adherence behavior,” points out Grambley. “So, just have a perspective of what you’re trying to achieve.”

RELATED: Find out how pharma companies use AI to improve medication adherence  across the drug lifecycle.

Understanding patient demographics leads to enhanced adherence programs

What are the realistic goals within your population demographic? Are you taking into account social determinants of health? Bear in mind, most adherence programs are targeted at patients who need more support – such as those with chronic diseases, for example heart disease and diabetes.

Your patients have many things going on that need to be taken into consideration when developing the intervention messaging and channel. We want patients to be receptive and able to act based on where they are in their healthcare journey.

Make sure you have a variety of ways, and reasons, to engage your patients

“There is a school of thought that regular interaction – in addition to the message – adds significantly to the effectiveness of outreach,” Schultz says. “But if you repeat the same message too often, then patients just get numb to it and they’ll ignore it.”

Instead, try building in opportunities to talk with patients at regular intervals in your program. This could be about the importance of taking their medicine one day, while an interaction one month later may be about a 90-day supply program, and still another a month or two later could be about using an automated reminder program.

Whatever the program has to offer to support the patient’s medication adherence can become content that can be worked into messaging.

AI can improve medication adherence

AllazoHealth is a pioneer in AI-driven healthcare experiences, helping healthcare organizations promote medication adherence and health outcomes.

Using patient-level data to predict risks, personalize interventions in an adherence program, and maximize individual engagement, AllazoHealth ensures omni-channel pharmaceutical marketing and patient support programs are dynamic and impactful.

Leverage AI to build a best-in-class patient support program