Researchers at the University of East Anglia have criticised pharmacies for giving out twice as many medicines dosette boxes (MDS) as they were ten years ago without understanding the benefit to patients.
In new research, ‘Quantifying and characterising Multi-compartment Compliance Aid provision; a national survey of community pharmacies’, the researchers conclude that there is limited evidence of pharmacists considering patient choice or risk of adverse events associated with use.
In new guidance endorsed by the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, prescribers are encouraged to evaluate the appropriateness of dosette boxes, along with other compliance aids such as easy open medicine bottles, coloured labelling, social support or medication review.
The guidance also encourages prescribers to “consider the emotional and practical barriers that might stop patients taking their medication correctly”, according to lead researcher Dr Debi Bhattacharya.
Emotional barriers can include the patient’s levels of anxiety, confidence, motivation or experience of unwanted side effects.