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Medication Adherence Issues in Geriatrics


Medication adherence remains a critical issue throughout the care delivery process. In the field of geriatrics, both patients and caregivers encounter numerous challenges that affect the targeted outcomes. When the elderly fail to take their drugs correctly or follow presented advice, chances are high they will be unable to achieve their health aims. This journal entry gives my personal reflection on medication adherence issues with geriatric patients in my practicum setting.

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Medication Adherence Issues

I am currently providing timely health services and care in an acute care inpatient health facility. The main area of concern is that of medication adherence among geriatric patients in my unit. Jin, Kim, and Rhie (2016) define this term as the degree to which an individual follows medical advice and takes drugs as prescribed. The main observation in my unit is that majority of the beneficiaries have low medication adherence scores. Several reasons have been found to contribute to this problem in my practicum setting. Firstly, many elderly individuals are unable to read or interpret medication information correctly. This problem makes it impossible for them to follow the provided advice. Secondly, most of the patients affected by this predicament are those with minimum education attainment levels or skills (Rodgers et al., 2018). Elderly individuals without relevant competencies regarding the effectiveness and use of drugs face additional problems.

Thirdly, the reduced involvement and contribution of clinicians and caregivers throughout the care delivery process is a risk factor for poor medication adherence among members of this population. Practitioners and nurses should, therefore, be ready to guide their geriatric patients and ensure that they record positive results (Shruthi, Jyothi, Pundarikaksha, Nagesh, & Tushar, 2016). Fourthly, the absence of education and counseling strategies is a major gap that affects the adherence abilities of many elderly patients. This is a clear indication that professionals can sensitize the targeted individuals in the inpatient unit to take their drugs as recommended and ask for advice whenever necessary.

Fifthly, the presence and willingness of patients’ relatives to be involved in the care delivery process dictates the rate at which different elderly people adhere to prescribed drugs. Those who receive the support of close friends or family members record desirable outcomes (O’Quin, Semalulu, & Orom, 2015). Finally, the nature of the targeted illness might influence the way patients make decisions regarding the presented drugs. For example, those who are depressed or fail to get adequate attention will face the problem of poor medicine adherence. These issues explain why many geriatric patients in my practicum setting and elsewhere continue to encounter numerous challenges. This is a clear indication that stakeholders should collaborate in order to address this problem and ensure that many elderly citizens in the United States achieve their health goals and lead contented lives.


The above discussion has identified medication adherence as a key determinant of health outcomes in different health settings. The elderly appear to be affected the most since they are usually unable to make informed decisions, lack adequate skills, have minimum education, or suffer from other diseases that affect their abilities. The journal has presented various strategies that can transform the situation and ensure that they record positive health experiences, such as the involvement of relatives, guidance from practitioners, and stakeholder collaboration. These initiatives will transform the situation and make it easier for more elderly citizens to lead contented lives.


Jin, H., Kim, Y., & Rhie, S. J. (2016). Factors affecting medication adherence in elderly people. Patient Prefer Adherence, 10, 2117-2125. Web.

O’Quin, K. E., Semalulu, T., & Orom, H. (2015). Elder and caregiver solutions to improve medication adherence. Health Education Research, 30(2), 323-335. Web.

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Rodgers, J. E., Thudium, E. M., Beyhaghi, H., Sueta, C. A., Alburikan, K. A., Kucharska-Newton, A. M., … Stearns, S. C. (2018). Predictors of medication adherence in the elderly: The role of mental health. Medical Care Research and Review, 75(6), 746-761. Web.

Shruthi, R., Jyothi, R., Pundarikaksha, H. P., Nagesh, G. N., & Tushar, T. J. (2016). A study of medication compliance in geriatric patients with chronic illnesses at a tertiary care hospital. Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research, 10(12), FC40-FC43. Web.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, October 17). Medication Adherence Issues in Geriatrics.

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StudyCorgi. "Medication Adherence Issues in Geriatrics." October 17, 2021.


StudyCorgi. 2021. "Medication Adherence Issues in Geriatrics." October 17, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Medication Adherence Issues in Geriatrics'. 17 October.

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