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BMJ. 1995 May 13;310(6989):1229-31.

Effects of self medication programme on knowledge of drugs and compliance with treatment in elderly patients.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacy, Seacroft Hospital, Leeds.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine whether a programme of self medication for inpatients improves compliance with treatment and knowledge of their drugs after discharge from hospital.

DESIGN:

Patients were prospectively recruited from four wards: two with a self medication programme and two acting as controls. Ten days after discharge the patients were visited at home. They were questioned about their drugs, and a tablet count was undertaken.

SETTING:

The pharmacy department and four medical wards with an interest in elderly patients at a district general hospital, and the patients' homes.

PATIENTS:

88 patients discharged to their own homes who were regularly taking one or more drugs.

INTERVENTION:

A hospital self medication programme in which patients are educated about their medicines and given increasing responsibility for taking them in hospital.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Compliance with and knowledge of the purpose of their medicines 10 days after discharge from hospital.

RESULTS:

The mean compliance score in patients taking part in the self medication programme was 95% compared with 83% in the control group (difference 12%, 95% confidence interval 4% to 21%; P < 0.02). Of the patients in the self medication group, 90% (38/42) knew the purpose of their drugs compared with 46% (17/37) in the control group (difference 44%, 26% to 63%; P < 0.001).

CONCLUSION:

A self medication programme is an effective aid for improving compliance with and knowledge of patients' drugs after discharge.

PMID:
7767193
PMCID:
PMC2549615
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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