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Durham University

Department of Sociology

Sociology Department Staff

Publication details for Dr Kimberly Jamie

Rathbone, A., Todd, A., Jamie, K., Bona, M., Banks, L. & Husband, A. (2017). A systematic review and thematic synthesis of patients' experience of medicines adherence. Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy 13(3): 403-439.

Author(s) from Durham

Abstract

Background: Medicines non-adherence continues to be problematic in health care practice. After decades
of research, few interventions have a robust evidence-based demonstrating their applicability to improve
adherence. Phenomenology has a place within the health care research environment.
Objective: To explore patients’ lived experiences of medicines adherence reported in the phenomenonologic
literature.
Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted to identify peer-reviewed and published
phenomenological investigations in adults that aimed to investigate patients’ lived experiences of
medicines adherence. Studies were appraised using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP)
Qualitative Research Tool. Thematic synthesis was conducted using a combination of manual coding and
NVivo10 [QSR International, Melbourne] coding to aid data management.
Results: Descriptive themes identified included i) dislike for medicines, ii) survival, iii) perceived need,
including a) symptoms and side-effects and b) cost, and iv) routine. Analytic themes identified were i)
identity and ii) interaction.
Conclusions: This work describes adherence as a social interaction between the identity of patients and
medicines, mediated by interaction with family, friends, health care professionals, the media and the
medicine, itself. Health care professionals and policy makers should seek to re-locate adherence as a social
phenomenon, directing the development of interventions to exploit patient interaction with wider society,
such that patients ‘get to know’ their medicines, and how they can be taken, throughout the life of the
patient and the prescription.