Pharmacotherapy plays an important role in the management of chronic diseases. However, many patients with chronic disease do not adhere to their medication regimen. This results in worsening symptoms and frequent re-hospitalizations. As a result, healthcare providers may view these patients as bad. Medication adherence is a complex concept. Analyzing this concept may assist nurses to improve patient-centered care. This paper uses Walker & Avant's method to conduct a concept analysis of medication adherence.
Results show the defning attributes of medication adherence as: (1) knowing and agreeing to the medication; (2) communicating and negotiating the regimen; and (3) active, continuous involvement in and appraisal of the treatment effect. Identifed antecedents of medication adherence included the patient having: (1) a prescribed medication regimen; (2) cognitive and action abilities in her/his role as a patient; and (3) level of preparation for medication treatment. Identifed consequences of medication adherence include: (1) improving symptom control; (2) decreasing re-hospitalizations and mortality; (3) reducing medical care costs; (4) restoring self-esteem; and (5) diminishing depression. It is hoped that this concept analysis provides a reference for nurses to achieve a better understanding of medication adherence and further improve nursing practice.
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