Pharmacy World & Science

, 31:627 | Cite as

Electronic reminders to improve medication adherence—are they acceptable to the patient?

  • Laura SahmEmail author
  • Aoife MacCurtain
  • John Hayden
  • Cicely Roche
  • Helen L. Richards
Short Research Report


Objective Low levels of adherence to medication are commonly reported in chronic medical conditions. Empirical evidence suggests that patients are willing to accept pharmacist interventions to improve adherence. This study aimed to assess the levels of self-reported adherence to antidepressant medication in the community and to investigate the acceptability of text message reminders to self-reported unintentional non-adherers. Setting Community pharmacy in Wexford; Republic of Ireland. Method A structured questionnaire was administered to patients who were collecting antidepressant medication, which had been prescribed for at least 6 months. Results Of the 59 patients who completed the study, 54% reported that they were unintentionally non-adherent. This group tended to be younger in age (t = −2.50, P = 0.02). Fifty-nine percent of the unintentional non-adherers were willing to receive a prompt such as a text message from the pharmacy to remind them to take their medication. There was no association between gender or age and acceptability of text message reminders. Conclusion Unintentional non-adherence to antidepressant medication exceeded 50% in this population. Electronic reminders, in this case text messages, were acceptable to approximately 60% of patients who reported being unintentionally non-adherent. Reasons for refusal of electronic reminders should be investigated as this will affect the applicability of this intervention.


Adherence Antidepressant Intervention Ireland Pharmacist 


Conflicts of interest statement

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laura Sahm
    • 1
    Email author
  • Aoife MacCurtain
    • 1
  • John Hayden
    • 1
  • Cicely Roche
    • 2
  • Helen L. Richards
    • 3
  1. 1.School of PharmacyUniversity College CorkCorkRepublic of Ireland
  2. 2.Roche’s PharmacyGoreyRepublic of Ireland
  3. 3.Department of Clinical Health PsychologyMercy University HospitalCorkRepublic of Ireland

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