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Major Reviews

A number of major reviews and reports of the evidence regarding compliance and concordance in medicine-taking. These documents are available to dowload in this area.
  • Systematic Review of Written Medicines Information
    A systematic review of the qualitative and quantitative research into the role and effectiveness of written medicines information of patients on individual medicines is due to start in October 2004.
    The review will cover research into written information available to the patient (from pharmacies and elsewhere) at any time after the decision has been made to prescribe or purchase a medicine.  This includes research into the role and value of such information (from the patient, carer and professional perspectives), as well as effectiveness studies.  
  • Adherence to long-term therapies: evidence for action
    Published by the World Health Organization January 2003
This report provides a critical review of what is known about what is known about adherence to long term therapies.  Diseases reviewed include TB, HIV, depression, epilepsy, substance dependence, hypertension, asthma and palliative care for cancer. The report highlights common issues which need to be addressed across all conditions.
The report is available at the WHO website
  • Interventions for helping patients to follow prescriptions for medications
    (Cochrane Review)
    Haynes RB, McDonald H, Garg AX, Montague P
    Latest update published February 2002
This is the latest update of the Cochrane review which synthesises results from methodologically robust trials of interventions to improve compliance. The review covers only a small proportion of total studies into compliance improving interventions.
The report is summarised in the Journal of the American Medical Association, JAMA 2002;288:2868-2879 (with a linked article on clinical applications on pages 2880-2883).  This can be accessed at the JAMA website.
An abstract of the full report is available from the Cochrane Library. Copies of the full report can be ordered from the Cochrane Library priced 10.