Status: This project is in progress

AHRQ MyMedsWhen patients begin taking a new medication the expectation is that the drug will help maintain or improve their health. However, patients may experience side effects and adverse events from their medications that can affect their health and decision to keep taking a medication as prescribed.

When a medication is prescribed and dispensed in a community setting, usually the patient will take the medication at home, consider how they are responding to it, and may or may not reconnect with their original prescriber promptly — or at all.

With the growing emphasis on engaging patients in their healthcare and information tracking using e-health technology, the objective of this project is to synthesize evidence on consumer health solutions that support patient self-monitoring after starting or stopping a medication.

Greater use of e-health technologies by patients and their families to monitor medication use could help foster safer and more effective use of medications. It could also provide valuable information to pharmacists so they can follow up with patients after medications have been started or stopped.

Despite the potential of e-health technologies, they are not used routinely in Canada by patients to self-monitor or by pharmacists to monitor patients after starting or stopping a medication.

Project activities

This project will synthesize evidence on the use and effectiveness of e-technologies for patient medication monitoring. A greater understanding of evidence supporting consumer health solutions for self-monitoring would help support adoption of consumer health solutions across members of the healthcare team, especially pharmacists and physicians.

The evidence this project synthesizes may also support improved quality and outcomes of pharmacist services as well as the reporting and assessment of symptoms to pharmacists as part of expanded professional pharmacy services.

Primary knowledge user: Maureen Charlebois, Chief Nursing Executive and Group Director, Clinical Adoption, Canada Health Infoway

Project lead: Lisa Dolovich

For more information about this applied health research question, please contact Annie Lok, AHRQ administrator.