In the News

Feb 10, 2016

Oral Oncolytics - How practices can increase adherence

IntrinsiQ Informs

In a recent article by Lisa Harrison, R.Ph., director of Pharmacy Services, ION Solutions, on adherence with oral oncolytics, Harrison reported that the rates of non-adherence can vary from 20 to 80 percent. This can often be attributed to fewer patient touchpoints.

What can practices do to help increase adherence?

1. Dedicate time for patient education a few days after initial diagnosis. Most patients (89 percent) said that knowing that the oral therapy might improve clinical outcomes might help with adherence.

2. Recommend that a patient bring a family member or friend to that appointment as their second set of ears.

3. Help the patient understand the drug and its benefits – they often think pills are not as effective as traditional chemotherapy.

4. Manage expectations around side effects.

5. Talk to patients about different scenarios, like missing a dose or forgetting to take their medication with food.

6. Reconcile and discuss all current medications, including over-the-counter medications and any food or drink that could interfere with their oral drug therapy.

7. Provide a written summary of your discussion so the patient has something to review at home.

Harrison also discusses questions to ask when profiling patients to see if they are candidates for oral oncolytics and what else to consider when prescribing oral oncolytics for your patients. You can read Harrison’s full article, “The Pledge of Adherence, A Practice-Level Guide to Improving Oral Oncolytics,” at

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