Adherence of Finnish people with glaucoma to treatment plans and connected factors

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Lunnela, Jaana ; Kääriäinen, Maria ; Kyngäs, Helvi (2012)
  • Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
  • Journal: International Journal of Circumpolar Health (issn: 1797-237X, eissn: 1239-9736)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/ijch.v70i1.17796
  • Subject: adherence, glaucoma, medical care, patient education, support

Objectives. The aim of the study was to describe the adherence of Finnish people with glaucoma to prescribed treatment plans, the factors connected to adherence and to produce knowledge for developing effective interventions to improve adherence to treatment plans. Study design. This was a cross-sectional study. Methods. The data (n=249) were collected at one point in time from Finnish adults diagnosed with glaucoma with a questionnaire covering adherence to treatment. These patients used glaucoma medication and had follow-up appointments with ophthalmologists. Results. Sixty-seven percent (n=166) of the patients with glaucoma were very adherent to the prescribed treatment plan in terms of self-care, treatment and follow-up visits. Almost all were very adherent to medical care (97%, n=242). More than half of those who had received information from physicians and nurses were very adherent to treatment (66%, n=163). Two factors, support from physicians and nurses (p<0.001) and being informed of the consequences of treatments (p=0.003), had a statistically significant connection to treatment adherence. Conclusions. This study indicates that people with glaucoma in Finland adhere well to care and exceptionally well to medical care. Support and patient education from health care personnel is crucial to maintain patient adherence to treatment. These results indicate that nurses play a very important role in patient education and support. In practice, it is crucial to maintain this level of patient engagement by developing more tailored and time-saving education and support methods. The results of this study could be helpful for developing new patient education and support approaches for people with glaucoma.(Int J Circumpolar Health 2011; 70(1):79–89)Keywords: adherence, glaucoma, medical care, patient education, support
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