Assessing Adherence to Antihypertensive Therapy in Primary Health Care in Namibia: Findings and Implications
Background: Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a major global public health problem. Lack of adherence to medication causes suboptimal glycemic control increasing complication rates, costs and mortality. The objective of the study was to determine current antidiabetic medication adherence in Botswana and assess associated factors so as to direct potential future interventions. Materials and methods: A cross-sectional study among 376 randomly selected diabetic patients attending a leading clinic in Gaborone, Botswana. Eight item Morisky Medication adherence questionnaire was used to assess antidiabetic medication adherence. A structured questionnaire was also used to collect information on factors influencing adherence including age, gender, education, type and duration of diabetes, treatment, complications and HIV status. Data were entered and analyzed using STATA Version 14, and logistic regression performed. Results: Over forty percent (41.8%) of patients were non-adherent to antidiabetic medications. Studied sociodemographic characteristics and clinical variables did not affect adherence. HIV positive status was associated with a statistically significant better adherence at multivariate analysis. Conclusion: Adherence to antidiabetic medication was found to be suboptimal in a setting where medicines are provided free of charge. Only HIV positivity was found to be significantly associated with better adherence, probably due to effect of greater psychosocial support and counselling as part of HIV treatment. There is a need to carry out studies to further improve understanding of factors associated with medication adherence that are pertinent to Botswana and similar settings given the growing prevalence of diabetes.