Purpose: It is unknown if multidose drug dispensing (MDD) systems are initiated for the appropriate patients. Therefore, the objective of this study was to compare the medication management problems of patients who were about to start with a MDD system (MDD patients) and patients who continued manually dispensed medication (non-MDD users) in order to identify if the appropriate patients receive a MDD system. Methods: Patient interviews (semi-structured) were conducted by 44 community pharmacists at the patient’s home. Patients over 65 years of age, home dwelling and using at least five chronic drugs, were eligible for the study. An assessment tool was developed including 22 potential medication management problems, covering four domains: functional (7), organizational (7), medication adherence (6), and medication knowledge (2). Median scores were calculated with the interquartile range. Additionally, cognitive function was assessed with the Mini-Cog and frailty using the Groningen Frailty Indicator. Results: One hundred eighty-eight MDD users and 230 non-MDD users were interviewed. MDD users were older, more often female, and using more drugs. Forty-two percent of the MDD users were possibly cognitively impaired and 63% were assessed as frail compared to 20 and 27% respectively of the non-MDD users. MDD users had more potential organizational problems (3 vs. 1; p < 0.01), functional problems (2 vs. 1; p < 0.01), medication adherence problems (1 vs. 0; p < 0.01), and medication knowledge problems (1 vs. 0; p < 0.01) compared to non-MDD users. Seventy percent of the MDD users scored six or more potential medication management problems while this was 22% among non-MDD users. Conclusions: The majority of MDD systems were initiated for patients who experienced multiple potential medication management problems suggesting a decreased medication management capacity.
Mertens, B. J., Kwint, H. F., van Marum, R. J., & Bouvy, M. L. (2018). Are multidose drug dispensing systems initiated for the appropriate patients? European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 74(9), 1159-1164. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00228-018-2478-5