About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 5272-5275
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-615-3324-4
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2011
Location: Madrid, Spain

IMPROVING THE RATES OF PATIENTS BRINGING THEIR MEDICATIONS TO CLINIC: THE SHOW-YOUR-MEDICATIONS (SYM) PROJECT

M. Shafiq1, B. Thomas2, D. Barb2, R. Saghafi2, N. Ilksoy2

1Mayo Clinic (UNITED STATES)
2Emory University School of Medicine (UNITED STATES)
Background: Accurate medication reconciliation is a crucial aspect of inpatient as well as outpatient medicine and can prevent many medical errors. Electronic health records do not preclude significant discrepancies between documentation and actual patient practice. Thus the best source of information remains the patient himself/herself. In clinical practices worldwide, especially those that cater to populations belonging to low socio-economic groups, getting the patient to bring their medications at their health care visit remains the major challenge.

Methods: Targetting patients visiting a public hospital's primary care clinic, we sought to increase their rates of bringing their medications or medication lists from under 50% to over 75%. We called our outcome of interest the SYM ("show-your-meds") rate. Through application of various quality improvement tools and models including fishbone, tally sheets and the PDSA (plan, do, study, act) technique, we employed and measured the effects of various interventions on improving the SYM rate of our patients.

Results: The quality improvement exercise was carried out over six months, and various tools were employed. A SYM rate that was consistently higher than 75% (and approaching 100%) was achieved with the introduction of a specific, standardized phone message sent out to patients during the week before their healthcare visit. Several barriers to implentation of this and other interventions were also identified along the way and addressed appropriately.

Conclusions: We were able to demonstrate that patients are most likely to bring their medications to clinic if verbally reminded close to the scheduled healthcare visit. Moreover, we identified several barriers to achieving a high SYM rate and also came up with their solutions. Given the considerable burden of time and effort imposed by uncertainty surrounding a patient's current medication intake, we propose that investing into an automated telephone reminder system using a standardized message is cost-effective and worth its while.
@InProceedings{SHAFIQ2011IMP,
author = {Shafiq, M. and Thomas, B. and Barb, D. and Saghafi, R. and Ilksoy, N.},
title = {IMPROVING THE RATES OF PATIENTS BRINGING THEIR MEDICATIONS TO CLINIC: THE SHOW-YOUR-MEDICATIONS (SYM) PROJECT},
series = {4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-3324-4},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {5272-5275}}
TY - CONF
AU - M. Shafiq AU - B. Thomas AU - D. Barb AU - R. Saghafi AU - N. Ilksoy
TI - IMPROVING THE RATES OF PATIENTS BRINGING THEIR MEDICATIONS TO CLINIC: THE SHOW-YOUR-MEDICATIONS (SYM) PROJECT
SN - 978-84-615-3324-4/2340-1095
PY - 2011
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2011
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2011 Proceedings
SP - 5272
EP - 5275
ER -
M. Shafiq, B. Thomas, D. Barb, R. Saghafi, N. Ilksoy (2011) IMPROVING THE RATES OF PATIENTS BRINGING THEIR MEDICATIONS TO CLINIC: THE SHOW-YOUR-MEDICATIONS (SYM) PROJECT, ICERI2011 Proceedings, pp. 5272-5275.
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