Medication compliance is as important to an individual’s health plan as routine screenings and annual physicals. When the need for medication is identified by a health care provider to address illnesses and symptoms, medication compliance is key to the expected outcomes and quality of life. There are many approaches that can be utilized when assisting an individual with a medication regimen. It’s important to institute a system that identifies and meets the individual’s needs. There are simple adjustments, such as a 7 day medication planner, a container labeled with the days of the week and multiple times that can simplify and improve med compliance. Memory impaired individuals may need a more detailed plan that includes an alert to remind the individual to take their medication. This could be as simple as a phone call from a loved one to remind and initiate medication compliance, or as complex as the introduction of a visiting nurse to the home to administer the medications.
Element Care has been faced with multiple challenges when it comes to medication compliance. We pride ourselves on personalized care plans to meet the individual’s needs to allow all our participants to remain in the community with a better quality of life. Some of the approaches utilized by Element Care have included a specialized daily packaging system from the pharmacy called Meds on Time (MOT). This system places all daily meds in specific dated and timed bubble packs that are color coded for simplicity. We also utilize medication planners for those individuals that are overwhelmed with a month’s supply of medications. We have placed medication reminders in the home utilizing Element care staff, telephonic machines such as MD2 machines as well as piloted an avatar based program (link to Kendra’s blog here). When medications are complex and a more skilled need is warranted for compliance, an Element Care nurse or contracted agency nurse will provide a home visit and administer medications to the participant. As you can see there are a variety of ways to assist and ensure an individual is taking their medication as directed. The goal is to identify the best process to allow compliance for a better quality of life.
Director of Nursing at Element Care