Can Technology Improve Medication Adherence in Older People with Dementia?

  • Najwan El-SaifiEmail author
  • Wendy Moyle
  • Cindy Jones
  • Haitham Tuffaha
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10898)


Older people with dementia often depend on caregivers to manage their medications. The complexity of medication regimens in this population can impede medication adherence (i.e., taking medications as prescribed), which may compromise the effectiveness of treatment and increase the cost and burden of illness. Different technological devices have been used to improve medication adherence, however, these devices are often not evidence-based or designed with end-user involvement, thereby affecting their acceptability by people living with dementia and their caregivers. This in turn, can influence the effectiveness and uptake of such devices. This study aims to explore the challenges of medication adherence for both older people with dementia and their caregivers to guide the development of future technological solutions that can be effective, practical and sustainable.


Medication adherence Dementia Technology Medication aids Webster packs 


  1. 1.
    Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Dementia in Australia Canberra: AIHW (2012).
  2. 2.
    Brodaty, H., Donkin, M.: Family caregivers of people with dementia. Dialogues Clin. Neurosci. 11(2), 217–228 (2009)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    World Health Organisation. The Epidemiology and Impact of Dementia Current State and FutureTrends (2015).
  4. 4.
    Alzheimer’s Disease International. The Global Impact of Dementia: An analysis of prevalence, incidence, cost and trends.
  5. 5.
    World Health Organisation. Adherence to Long-Term Therapies - Evidence for Action 2003, 30 May 2016.
  6. 6.
    Kocurek, B.: Promoting Medication Adherence in Older Adults and the Rest of Us. Diabetes Spectr. 22(2), 80–84 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Cutler, R.L., Fernandez-Llimos, F., Frommer, M., Benrimoj, C., Garcia-Cardenas, V.: Economic impact of medication non-adherence by disease groups: a systematic review. BMJ Open 8(1), e016982 (2018)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Center for Technology and Aging. Technologies for Optimizing Medication Use in Older Adults.
  9. 9.
    Marsch, L.A., Lord, S.E., Dallery, J.: Behavioural Healthcare and Technology: Using Science-Based Innovations to Transform Practice. Oxford University Press, Oxford (2015)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Hamine, S., Gerth-Guyette, E., Faulx, D., Green, B.B., Ginsburg, A.S.: Impact of mHealth chronic disease management on treatment adherence and patient outcomes: a systematic review. J. Med. Internet Res. 17(2), e52 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Markiewicz, K., Van Til, J., Ijzerman, M.: Early assessment of medical devices in development for company decision making: an exploration of best practices. J. Commer. Biotechnol. 23(2), 15–30 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Rothery, C., Claxton, K., Palmer, S., Epstein, D., Tarricone, R., Sculpher, M.: Characterising uncertainty in the assessment of medical devices and determining future research needs: characterising uncertainty in the assessment of devices. Health Econ. 26, 109–123 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    El-Saifi, N., Moyle, W., Jones, C., Tuffaha, H.: Medication adherence in older patients with dementia: a systematic literature review. J. Pharm. Practice (2017).
  14. 14.
    Braun, V., Clarke, V.: Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qual. Res. Psychol. 3(2), 77–101 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Najwan El-Saifi
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Wendy Moyle
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cindy Jones
    • 1
    • 2
  • Haitham Tuffaha
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Menzies Health Institute QueenslandGriffith UniversityNathan, BrisbaneAustralia
  2. 2.School of Nursing and MidwiferyGriffith UniversityNathan, BrisbaneAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Applied Health Economics, School of MedicineGriffith UniversityNathan, BrisbaneAustralia

Personalised recommendations