When patients have financial barriers to medication adherence, the financial hardship can be due to a number of medication reasons: being uninsured, being underinsured, being prescribed non-preferred or brand name agents, or due to polypharmacy, etc. When you have identified that money or cost may be preventing adherence for patients, there are several questions you can ask the patient to better address the specific problem.
First, follow the diagram above to find the problem and to find suggested solutions. Then, ask the pertinent questions below to better identify the needs of your specific patient.
- What copay can the patient afford?
- Has the patient used medication assistance programs in the past? Why did they stop using this program?
- Can the patient’s medication therapy be simplified or combined? Example: consolidating a calcium channel blocker and an ACE inhibitor to a higher dose of the ACE inhibitor.
- Is this a temporary financial hardship or long term?
- Does the patient qualify for the resources on page 2?
- Can the patient meet with a social worker from his/her hospital or clinic in order to establish insurance/medical assistance coverage?