Assessment and Measurement of Medication Adherence: Oral Agents for Cancer

Sandra L. Spoelstra

Cynthia N. Rittenberg

medication, adherence, oral agents for cancer, Assessment, measurement
CJON 2015, 19(3), 47-52. DOI: 10.1188/15.S1.CJON.47-52

Background: Clinicians are challenged to find ways to assess and measure adherence to oral agents for cancer (OACs).

Objectives: The purpose of this article is to report on available ways to assess and measure medication adherence by patients with cancer.

Methods: Tools examined include the Morisky Medication Adherence Scale (MMAS) and the Adherence Estimator, which are able to predict risk of nonadherence. Adherence Starts With Knowledge (ASK®)-12 and the Brief Adherence Rating Scale (BARS) are likely to be effective for predicting nonadherence and measuring adherence rates.

Findings: Additional research needs to focus on the testing of reliable and valid tools that are sensitive and specific to patients with cancer who are prescribed OACs. The authors found that the MMAS and Adherence Estimator tools may be useful at predicting risk of medication nonadherence, and the ASK-12 and BARS may be useful for measuring rates of adherence. Tools could be modified to a specific clinical setting and used in a standardized format so that nurses can assess risk of medication nonadherence and measure adherence rates of OACs.

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