A Spanish project that evaluated the improvement, maintenance and adherence to therapy achieved by a pharmacy adherence service in patients with hypertension, asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. has jointly won the Internation Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) Pharmacy Practice Improvement Award for 2020.
The winning initiative of the joint awardee, the General Pharmaceutical Council of Spain (GPCS), is a research project called AdherenciaMED.
Its first phase, involving 98 community pharmacies and 1,186 patients, found a 50% increase in adherence in the intervention group compared with a 20% increase in the control group. Improvements included better clinical control and increased quality of life for patients with asthma.
The service consists of pharmaceutical advice provided to patients based on evidence-based models for behavioural change, as well as using strategies such as monitored dosage systems and education on inhaler technique. Interventions are recorded electronically. The initiative includes support to pharmacies from a practice change facilitator, who helps pharmacists implement the changes needed to incorporate the service into their daily routine.
The service was also found to be cost-effective. For every EUR 1 invested, the service provided value of EUR 38 per patient within six months. A second phase of the project looked at implementation aspects and determined that 75% of pharmacies were able to fully provide the service at six months and successfully integrate the service into their daily practice.
Mr Jesús Aguilar Santamaría, GPCS president, said:
“The General Pharmaceutical Council of Spain welcomes the international recognition of this work. Lack of adherence to therapy is one of the main challenges for healthcare professionals and healthcare systems and, in Spain, is estimated to generate an expenditure of EUR 11,250m per year.”