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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464


LIMA-DELLAMORA, Elisangela da Costa; OSORIO-DE-CASTRO, Claudia Garcia Serpa; MADRUGA, Livia Gonçalves dos Santos Lima  and  AZEREDO, Thiago Botelho. Use of pharmacy records to measure treatment adherence: a critical review of the literature. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2017, vol.33, n.3, e00136216.  Epub Apr 20, 2017. ISSN 1678-4464.

The current frame of reference on adherence to pharmacotherapy includes a set of behaviors experienced by the user, with observation of the detailed and continuous history of the use of each dose of the medication. Indicators based on pharmacy records have been used to measure adherence. The current review aimed to identify and describe indicators based on pharmacy records and to discuss their adequacy and limitations for measuring adherence. An exploratory literature review was conducted in three databases using the terms "adherence", "pharmacy records/administrative data", and "measure" to compose the descriptors for the selection of 81 articles and the elaboration of a chart with the denomination, sources, methods for calculation, description, and interpretation of the operational and referential meaning of 14 indicators. Given the most recent taxonomy for adherence proposed in the literature, we concluded that the indicators can be useful for identifying patients with medication-seeking behavior-related problems and analysis of persistence. The distance between supply-related events and difficulties in treatment follow-up can influence an analysis based exclusively on the use of these indicators.

Keywords : Medication Adherence; Indicators of Health Services; Pharmaceutical Services.

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