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Oct 24th 2016

Medicines Adherence: Supporting Patients with their Treatment (FutureLearn)

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How can healthcare professionals help patients to improve their health through medicines adherence? It is estimated that 30-50% of patients do not take their medicines as prescribed. So how should we, as healthcare professionals, respond? As medicines are key to the successful management of chronic conditions, underuse or non-adherence represents a lost opportunity for the health improvement for the patient as well as being a waste of valuable resources for healthcare systems. In Europe alone, the cost of poor adherence to treatment is estimated at 195,000 lives and €20 billion annually.

This two week course is designed for pharmacists, doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals with a role or interest in supporting patients with long-term conditions. We’ve invited a range of inspirational healthcare professionals. researchers and clinical academics from across King’s college London’s Institute of Pharmaceutical Science and the Pharmaceutical Clinical Academic Group at King’s Health Partners to contribute to this course. You will be able to immerse yourself in our engaging video material, scenarios and discussions to explore the challenges of medicines non-adherence, factors that may influence patient medicines use and approaches that can be used to effectively engage patients in patient-centred consultations about self-managing medicines.

Delivered in bite-sized sections, you will be able to enhance your own understanding of medicines adherence and, importantly, gain increasing awareness of where in your own day-to-day consultations you can apply these techniques and approaches to better support patient self-management of medicines and effect behaviour change. We look forward to walking you through this important and challenging area of healthcare provision.

By the end of this two week course, learners will have developed their understanding, and reflected upon their own clinical practice and consultation skills, in order to:

1) Identify patients at risk of medicines non-adherence

2) Employ strategies to support these patients with the use of their medicines.

The learning materials have been designed to take approximately 1-2 hours per week to complete.


Success and feedback from the course

Since April 2014 over 15,000 learners have registered on this course from across the world. There has been a rich multidisciplinary range of healthcare professionals, including primary and secondary care pharmacists, doctors, nurses and dentists, alongside patients and carers. Previous learners have indicated that they agree or strongly agree that:

- they gained skills and knowledge from the course that will allow them to work more effectively with patients with medicines adherence issues (94%).

- the course enabled them to respond to medicines adherence issues with greater confidence (93%).

- the course had added a fresh perspective to their current role (95%).

- they would recommend the course to a colleague or friend (97%).