Treatment adherence is a topic that is well studied but not well understood. Low treatment adherence is a significant issue that limits the effective management and treatment of chronic conditions, creating significant health care burden, costs, and poor patient outcomes. This report provides a review of the factors that facilitate or create barriers to treatment adherence, as well as strategies recommended to overcome adherence barriers. A total of 25 interviews were conducted with practitioners demonstrating both high (n = 16) and low (n = 9) treatment adherence rates. A total of 185 survey responses were received from high-treatment adherence rate practitioners (n = 21), low-treatment adherence rate practitioners (n = 83), and practitioners that were neither in the high- or low-treatment adherence rate range (n = 81). Practitioner prescribing behaviors and adherence statistics were determined and stratified by high-treatment adherence rate and low-treatment adherence rate practitioners. From the interviews, 78% of low-rate practitioners mentioned that establishing trust is a primary best practice for optimizing adherence, and for high-rate practitioners, 69% thought that facilitating trust was important to optimizing adherence. Both low-and high-adherence rate practitioners prioritized using a staged approach as a strategy to overcome barriers to adherence. From the total survey sample it was found that key strategies to improving adherence included the practice of booking follow-up appointments, using lab results to explain treatment plans, and using a staged approach for treatment plans. Our research sought to elicit strategies and skills that can help improve treatment adherence in integrative medicine and our findings have identified several common practices that can help to improve adherence. Research taking advantage of mobile devices and the internet for adherence has started to expand within the last 10 to 15 years. Technology has the potential to lead the development and establishment of a centralized database that acquires adherence information and provides solutions to its practitioners and patients. Further work to advance the field of integrative medicine through additional research and interventions that support treatment adherence would be valuable to the effective treatment and management of integrative medicine patients.Copyright © 2021 InnoVision Professional Media Inc.
- Business of Medicine
- Doctor’s Voice