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Title: Adherence to antihypertensive medication in the UAE
Author: AlQasem, Ayesha Ahmad Rashid
ISNI:       0000 0004 2712 7247
Awarding Body: University College London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2011
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Background: Poor adherence to medication is a major problem in healthcare services, particularly with chronic illness. In the United Arab Emirates, non-adherence to medication among hypertensive patients is believed to be a major barrier to the appropriate management of the disease. However, there are gaps in our understanding about the extent of nonadherence and reasons for not taking medication as prescribed in this population Aims: 1) To explore barriers to adherence to medications and other self-care behaviours among Emirati hypertensive participants. 2) To assess the extent and predictive factors of non-adherence to antihypertensive medications in the UAE in order to recommend potential interventions needed for improving adherence. Methods: A qualitative exploratory study using semi-structured interviews with 20 patients and a cross-sectional quantitative survey with 391 patients randomly selected from all seven Emirates of the UAE. Results: Qualitative interviews revealed issues that may affect antihypertensive medication adherence among Emirati patients, including: a) Beliefs about illness and medicines, b) Social support, c) Healthcare providers and system issues, and d) Perceptions of herbal medicines. Most of the participants reported non-adherence to medication, but adherence to exercise and diet was often even lower. The quantitative survey showed that approximately 66% of Emirati hypertensive patients were non-adherent to their medications. Four variables significantly predicted patients' non-adherence to medications in the logistic regression model. The model suggested that hypertensive patients with uncontrolled blood pressure who live in rural areas and who doubted the ability of the treatment to control their hypertension and had more concerns about their medicines were more likely to be non-adherent to their medication. Conclusion: This thesis showed that barriers to medication adherence in the UAE were complex and often interlinked, suggesting that multiple, tailored interventions may be needed to improve antihypertensive medication adherence and patient outcomes.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available