Sandra Spoelstra, PhD, RN, assistant professor, Michigan State University, discusses how to help improve cancer medication adherence.
Spoelstra suggests patients who are taking oral cancer medication should take a course to help them adhere better. Instead of nurses simply telling patients to take their medication at a certain time, Spoelstra says drug adherence will be improved if nurses can convince patients to marry their actual routine with the new routine of taking their cancer medication.
At the same time, nurses are trying to teach patients to know when to interact with clinicians when they are experiencing moderate to severe symptoms. This way, Spoelstra says, strategies can be put in place so patients do not get discouraged by the side effects and stop taking their medicine.