Continued Dispensing: What medications do patients believe should be available?
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© 2015 Abukres et al. Background. Continued Dispensing (CD) is a new medication supply method for certain medications in Australia. It aims to prevent treatment interruption as a result of patients' inability to obtain a new valid prescription. The only currently eligible patients for this service are statin and/or oral contraceptives users who have been using these medications for 6 months or more, have not utilized the CD method during the last 12 months, and cannot obtain an immediate appointment with the prescriber in order to get a new prescription. This study aimed to investigate patients' attitudes towards potential extension and expansion of this medication supply method. Methods. A randomly selected 301 users of these medications from all Australian States were recruited using Computer Assisted Telephone Interview (CATI). Result. The response rate was 79%. The majority of the participants (73.3%) did not agree with current restriction on CD utilization frequency. They also supported, to varying degrees, inclusion of all the proposed medications (support ranged from 44.2-78.4%). In this regard, participants who suffered from a specific disease did not differ significantly fromthose without the disease except in case of patients with depression (p = 0.001). Conclusions. Participants of this study strongly supported both CD extension and expansion. A future critical review of the current version of CD is highly recommended in order to enhance CD capability to achieve its goals.
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