Impact of Automated Notifications on Prescription Abandonment.

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Publication Date


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J Pharm Pract


washington; olympia


BACKGROUND: Prescription abandonment impacts patients' quality of life and disease progression. In addition, prescription abandonment can increase total healthcare costs.

OBJECTIVE: This study compared effects of automated telephone calls (ATC), automated text messages (ATM), and control on prescription abandonment rates with Medicare defined Star Rated medications. The secondary objective compared prescription abandonment rates between age groups (18-64 versus ≥ 65 years) within each arm.

METHODS: This was a retrospective observational analysis from a regional division of a large community-based pharmacy chain. Star Rated medication prescriptions consisting of hydroxymethylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase inhibitors, renin-angiotensin system antagonists, and non-insulin type 2 diabetes mellitus medications were included. Prescriptions for patients who activated or deactivated automated notification enrollment during the study period were excluded.

RESULTS: A total of 31,056, 33,278, and 20,299 prescriptions were included in the analysis of ATC, ATM, and control arms, respectively. Prescription abandonment occurred on 726 (2.3%) prescriptions within ATC arm, 864 (2.6%) prescriptions within ATM arm, and 513 (2.5%) prescriptions within control arm (p = 0.099). Prescription abandonment occurred on 390 (2.6%) prescriptions for 18-64 and 336 (2.1%) prescriptions for 65 years or older within the ATC arm (p = 0.002). Prescription abandonment occurred on 251 (2.9%) prescriptions for 18-64 and 262 (2.3%) prescriptions for 65 years or older within the control arm (p = 0.006).

CONCLUSION: No difference in rates of prescription abandonment existed between each automated notification arm on Star Rated medications. ATC notifications decreased rates of prescription abandonment when utilized by patients 65 years or older.


Family Medicine