Technological advances for improving medication adherence in the elderly

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Nonadherence to medication regimens is common, especially with long-term medical therapy. It is a serious but potentially correctable cause of treatment failure and adverse drug-related complications resulting in hospitalization and even death among elderly patients. Reasons for nonadherence among the elderly are incompletely understood, but include complex medication regimens, age-related disease and disability, frank or subtle cognitive impairment, poor understanding of medication use, and inadequate patient - provider communication. Most successful models shown to improve medication adherence have reduced medication regimen complexity, enhanced patient self-management, and improved patient-provider communication. Many experts see promising uses for telecommunication and data management technologies to improve medication adherence. Current technologies marketed to help seniors purport to improve medication adherence, though few have demonstrated long-term success at improving important health outcomes. More work is needed to understand nonadherence in the elderly, to develop simple methods, including technological solutions, and to improve medication adherence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-48
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Long-Term Care
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 16 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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