Communication and Medication Refill Adherence The Diabetes Study of Northern California

Jama: December 31, 2012

Background  Poor medication refill adherence contributes to poor cardiometabolic control and diabetes outcomes. Studies linking communication between patients and health care providers to adherence often use self-reported adherence and have not explored differences across communication domains or therapeutic indications.

Methods  To investigate associations between patient communication ratings and cardiometabolic medication refill adherence, we conducted a cross-sectional analysis of 9377 patients in the Diabetes Study of Northern California (DISTANCE), a race-stratified, random sample of Kaiser Permanente survey respondents. Eligible participants received 1 or more oral hypoglycemic, lipid-lowering, or antihypertensive medication in the 12 months preceding the survey. Communication was measured with a 4-item Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey (CAHPS) score and 4 items from the Trust in Physicians and Interpersonal Processes of Care instruments. Poor adherence was classified as greater than a 20% continuous medication gap for ongoing medication therapies. Using modified least squares regression, we calculated differences in poor adherence prevalence for a 10-point decrease in CAHPS score and compared higher vs lower communication ratings on other items, adjusting for necessary sociodemographic and medical confounders derived from a directed acyclic graph. Read more