Diabetes is a silent disease—most of these patients feel fine, even if their sugar levels are dangerously high. Because they don’t feel ill, many diabetic patients aren’t motivated to change their lifestyles or follow prescribed medical treatment.
In fact, as few as 60% of patients with type 2 diabetes take prescribed medications, according to a study in the American Journal of Managed Care. Another study, in Diabetes Therapy, showed that less than 50% of diabetic patients achieve recommended glycemic goals.
Furthermore, direct risk reduction for diabetes-related kidney disease, stroke, heart disease, and amputation were estimated for 100% compliance with diabetes treatment, as reported in a study in Innovations in Pharmacy. Risk, case, and yearly cost reduction calculated for 100% compliance with diabetes treatment were 13.6%, 0.9 million, and $9.3 billion, respectively.
Given this, it’s obvious that adhering to treatment protocols can significantly benefit diabetes patients. So how can providers—who are ultimately responsible for motivating patients to improve compliance—achieve the goal of better compliance among diabetic patients? Here, experts offer solutions for some common noncompliance issues.