A recent study claims that text reminders help people take their medicine. Researchers said that around a third of people who don’t take their prescribed medications are either not clear about the potential danger and benefits of the medication or they forget to do so.
A professor and cardiologist at the Queen Mary University of London, England and lead author of the study, Dr. David Wald said:
“An important and overlooked problem in medicine is the failure to take prescribed medication. The results of this trial show that text message reminders help prevent this in a simple and effective way. More than just a reminder, the texts provided the link to identify patients who needed help,”
There were over 300 participants who were given cholesterol lowering or/and blood pressure pills in the study investigating if text reminders help people take their medicine. The participants were split out into two lists, some of them receiving text messages reminding them to take their medications and the other did not.
The people in the text group were sent messages asking them if they had taken their prescribed medication that day. The text messages were sent every day for a period of two weeks, then every other day for another period of two weeks and after that weekly for duration of six months. If the people in the group did not reply to the text message they were offered help through a phone call.
According to the study, just 9 percent of the group receiving text messages had stopped taking the medications when compared to 25 percent of people that did not receive text messages that stopped taking their medications.
The text service can also help in other disorders. And even though the research was quite small, it was really encouraging, said a senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, Maureen Talbot.
Professor emeritus, pharmaceutical and public health policy at the University College London said:
“The health implications of these results are considerable from both an economic and a health gain perspective. The method is not limited to cardiovascular disease prevention and could be used for patients on treatment for other chronic diseases,”