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On TRACk – Through Training, Preparation, and Counseling, to Better use of Inhaled Medication

  • At: PPR 2022 (2022)
  • Type: Poster
  • Poster code: PT-22
  • By: TE PASKE, Roland (Nivel)
  • Co-author(s): Roland Te Paske, Junior Researcher / Phd Student, Netherlands Institute for Health Services Research (Nivel), , Netherlands
    Liset van Dijk, Coordinator research program, University of Groningen, Groningen Research Institute of Pharmacy, Unit of PharmacoTherapy, - Epidemiology & -Economics, Netherlands
    Annemiek Linn, University of Amsterdam /Amsterdam School of Communication Research, Netherlands
    Job van Boven, University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Clinical Pharmacy & Pharmacology,, Netherlands
    Ellen Koster, Department of Pharmacoepidemiology & Clinical Pharmacology (UPPER), Netherlands
    Marcia Vervloet, Senior researcher

  • Abstract:

    Background information: Over 70% of patients with asthma/COPD in the Netherlands make mistakes in inhaling their medication. The community pharmacy plays a vital role in medication education, especially in patients with inhaled medication. Providing accurate inhaler instruction to patients, that are actively involved in their medication treatment, is essential. The first six months since the start of their treatment in particular are essential to prevent development of (un)intended inhaler technique errors.

    Purpose: We aimed to develop and pilot-test the On TRACk-intervention: an online communication training for pharmacy team members (PTs) on inhaled medication counseling and counseling preparation for patients and PTs to improve medication adherence and health outcomes in patients with asthma/COPD.

    Methods: The On TRACk internet portal was developed to facilitate PT’s communication training and PTs’ and patients’ counseling preparation. Focus groups with patients with asthma/COPD were conducted to accumulate relevant inhaled medication related topics to construct a question prompt list that was applied for patients’ counseling preparation. The intervention was piloted in two community pharmacies, with four PTs and 13 asthma/COPD patients. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to evaluate their experiences.

    Results: PTs acknowledged that the personal feedback they received in the communication training was directly applicable in daily practice. They valued suggestions to stimulate patient involvement, and to provide tailored information that matches their patients’ needs. PTs also addressed that hands-on information on inhaler instruction techniques were helpful additions to their skillsets. Patients valued the opportunity to propose topics they considered significant to discuss and felt more engaged in the their treatment. Patients also indicated they felt they were more a conversation partner, than a patient on the receiving end of medical information.

    Conclusion: The pilot was successful. On TRACk improves PTs’ inhaler medication counseling skills and bolsters patients’ involvement in their treatment. However, on TRACk needs to be evaluated in the upcoming clinical trial on its effectiveness on medication adherence and patients’ health outcomes. The On TRACk intervention aligns with PTs’ needs and wishes, in terms of proving directly applicable tips and hands-on information to apply in daily practice. Counseling preparation provides patients with the opportunity to explore their own barriers in medication use and empower them in consultations with healthcare providers.

    Topic area: Adherence

Last update 4 October 2019

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