A Collaborative Health Adherence Optimization System




Lengwe, Maybins Douglas

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Non-adherence to prescribed medication negatively impacts healthcare sector and over 50% of patients fail to adhere to their prescribed medication regimens. The ramifications of non-compliance are extensive, impacting both healthcare systems and patients alike. Within healthcare systems, non-adherence has been identified as a primary factor contributing to approximately half of all hospital admissions related to medication, incurring annual costs in the billions of dollars. For patients, nonadherence manifests in heightened risks or severity of ailments, potential relapses, and, in severe cases, mortality. The underlying causes of non-adherence are diverse, with unintentional omissions, prominently attributed to forgetfulness, accounting for over one-third of all instances of non-adherence. A viable remedy often involves leveraging reminder systems, which have demonstrated relative effectiveness, particularly when complemented with human support. This dissertation aims to address the issue of non-adherence resulting from challenges in integrating prescriptions into the demanding, active lives of patients. The study delves into ascertaining optimal approaches to support self-management of prescriptions through the utilization of calendars. The research comprises three studies assessing the usability of calendars for effective medication management. These studies encompass; formalizing prescriptions through temporal reasoning frameworks (Study 1); exploring diverse methods of presenting medication information within calendars alongside other events (Study 2); and evaluating the calendar prototype to gauge its efficacy in facilitating medication management (Study 3). Study 1 resulted in the proposition of Simple Temporal Networks (STP) in formalizing prescriptions. Insights from Study 2 informed the proposition of design guidelines encompassing aspects such as (i) employing a familiar design, (ii) facilitating patients’ self-reflection on medication adherence, (iii) ensuring medications do not clutter the calendar interface, (iv) empowering users to control the privacy of medication information within the calendar, and (v) enabling the sharing of medication-only calendars. Study 3 validated the usability of the calendar and its efficacy to support medication management, personal reflection, and schedule refinements. The findings from these studies underscore the potential for calendars to be designed with both expressiveness and efficiency to support medication prescriptions effectively. Additionally, patients utilizing multiple medications expressed receptiveness toward adopting calendars as a means of managing their medication regimens.



Medication Adherence, Information Visualization, Prescription Calendars, Medication Calendar, Personal Reflection, Adherence, Visualization, Temporal Reasoning Framework, Calendar, Prescription Schedule, Schedule Optimization