Current Content
Volume 43 - Number 5
September/October 2017

Strategies to Guide Medication Adherence Discussions with Parents of Children with Asthma
Kelly G. Ezzell

Asthma is the most common chronic disease in children worldwide and affects nearly 10% of Americans under the age of 18 years (Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement, 2016). There is currently no cure for asthma, but appropriate medications, avoidance of irritants, and proper patient education can greatly reduce symptoms, which may result in decreased morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs (Zahran, Bailey, & Garbe, 2011). Although adherence to inhaled corticosteroid therapy is imperative for effective asthma management, medication usage rates are less than optimal in the pediatric population, with fewer than half of the pediatric asthma population adhering to prescribed therapy (Morton, Everard, & Elphick, 2014). Multiple barriers contribute to medication non-adherence, and it is essential that healthcare providers identify and address these barriers to ensure optimal treatment and management of this chronic disease. Addressing non-adherence can be difficult. Therefore, the provider should be prepared to approach this topic in a non-authoritative manner to ensure open communication with patients and caregivers.