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E-Prescribing Increases Medication Adherence

E-Prescribing Increases Medication Adherence

Electronic prescribing (e-prescribing) decreases prescription errors and enhances coordination between physician and pharmacist, but what has remained unclear is how it affects patient behavior. Now a new study suggests e-prescribing may enhance patient prescription adherence. In an analysis of nearly 2500 patients, e-prescribing was associated with a significant reduction in primary nonadherence, defined as not filling and picking up all prescriptions within 1 year of the prescription date. report Adewole S. Adamson, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Dermatology at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and colleagues in an article published online October 26 in JAMA Dermatology. The researchers compared rates of nonadherence associated with e-prescriptions and paper prescriptions among new patients attending an outpatient dermatology clinic at a large urban hospital. The risk for primary nonadherence was 17 percentage points lower with e-prescriptions than that associated with paper prescriptions, for a 16% difference after adjusted multivariable analysis, Dr Adamson and colleagues explain. This “represents a 47% reduction in the risk of primary nonadherence for patients who received an e-prescription vs those who received a paper prescription.” These findings suggest that, as the trend toward e-prescribing grows, clinicians “shouldn’t have to worry that there’s less of a chance for [patients] to fill it than if they were to give them paper,” Dr Adamson said in a podcast interview with JAMA Dermatology. However, he added, the rate of nonadherence was still more than 15% in people who received e-prescriptions, so “more study is needed to see why patients don’t fill their prescriptions.” The authors conducted a retrospective record review of patients attending a dermatology clinic through...
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