23 Feb Mail Order Pharmacies Linked To Better Compliance With Stroke Medications
Medical Research: What is the background for this study?
Dr. Neil: Stroke survivors are less likely to have a recurrent stroke, or other complications if they take their medications as prescribed by their doctor. Mail order pharmacies are increasingly being used to deliver medications for a variety of diseases, and their use is associated with better medication adherence. We wanted to see whether stroke patients who use mail-order pharmacies were more likely to have good medication adherence than those who used local pharmacies.
Medical Research: What are the main findings?
Dr. Neil: We looked through a large electronic medical database in California, and found a total of 48,746 people discharged from the hospital with a stroke, and who also filled either a cholesterol medication or an anticoagulant (blood thinner). Of these, 136,722 refills were from a local pharmacy and 68,363 were by mail. Overall, patients were adherent to the medications 46.5% of the time if they picked up the medication from the pharmacy and 74% of the time if they had prescriptions mailed to them.
Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Neil: Stroke survivors who obtain medication by mail are more likely to have good medication adherence than those who obtain them from local pharmacies.
Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Neil: Future studies should examine the impact of mail-order pharmacy use on vascular risk marker control and further events such as recurrent hospitalization, or death after stroke.
William P. Neil, MD (2016). Mail Order Pharmacies Linked To Better Compliance With Stroke Medications