Physician’s Perception Versus Patient’s Actual Incidence of Drug Non-adherence in Chronic Illnesses

  • Siddiqui A
  • Siddiqui A
  • Jawaid M
  • et al.
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Objectives Treatment adherence is crucial to the success of a management plan. The objectives of this study are (i) to assess medication adherence in patients with chronic diseases, (ii) to assess if physicians correctly perceive medication adherence among said patients, and (iii) to investigate the factors associated with low drug adherence. Materials & methods This observational cross-sectional study included 283 patients and 208 physicians from various hospitals in Karachi, Pakistan. The participants in the "patient group" completed the eight-item Morisky Medication Adherence Scale form. The participants in the "physician group" completed a questionnaire with questions related to their perception of their patients' characteristics of adherence to medical prescriptions. Data were entered and analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) for Windows, Version 22.0. (IBM Corp., Armonk, NY). Results The actual incidence of low drug adherence among patients with chronic diseases is 85%. However, the perceived incidence by physicians is 40%. Low adherence was common in women, individuals aged 35 to 50 years, and individuals who were single and illiterate. Adherence decreased with an increasing number of pills, duration of treatment, and increasing average expense of medications. The actual most common barrier to adherence among patients is medication cost; however, physicians perceive forgetfulness to be the more common barrier. Conclusion Patients with chronic illnesses have low medication adherence levels. Physicians, however, misinterpret the frequency of low adherence. Our findings will help physicians have a more real and accurate understanding of the challenges their patients face in long-term adherence to treatment regimens. It may ultimately lead to improved treatment adherence and quality of management once patients' actual challenges are addressed and necessary steps are taken.




Siddiqui, A., Siddiqui, A. S., Jawaid, M., & Zaman, K. A. (2017). Physician’s Perception Versus Patient’s Actual Incidence of Drug Non-adherence in Chronic Illnesses. Cureus.

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