Medicines play an essential role in curing disease. However, there is a growing number of reports that shows us that many patients do not use medicines as prescribed or do not receive as much information as they need. Medication non-compliance (adherence) remains a pervasive medical problem not only in adult population but also in children. Multiple variables contribute to non-adherence negatively affecting treatment outcomes, for example, children's medication related beliefs and problems related to medicine use which may be considered as non-compliance: dose omissions, incorrect dosage, improper dosing intervals patients' unwillingness to use medications, etc. Medication compliance in paediatrics is unique because not only compliance of the child but also parents must be taken into account. There is no uniform agreement what degree of compliance is required for an adequate therapeutic outcome in paediatric patients. At the same time the extent to which any patient adheres to a medical regimen is an essential determinant of clinical success. Many problems potentially generating non-compliance might be prevented, if children would be empowered as medicine users. Communicating with children taking into account their cognitive development is one important way to prevent non-compliance problems. Medicines optimisation focuses on improved outcomes for patients, e.g., helps patients to take their medicines correctly and to improve medicines safety.
After the seminar, participants should be able to: • identify barriers to medication compliance; • describe strategies to improve adherence in children; • identify children's medicine related beliefs; • describe how to communicate with different aged children taking into account their cognitive level.
Educational need addressed
Hospital pharmacists need to know factors that influence medication non-adherence in paediatric patients and how to improve adherence in this patient group, for example, by taking into account the cognitive development level of the child in the communication.
Keywords: Paediatric patients, medication compliance, barriers to adherence, medicine related beliefs.