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New Study Indicates Decreasing Prescription Copayments Results in Increased Adherence for Patients with Chronic Diseases
Date:1/8/2008

Study published in Health Affairs highlights large employer's efforts to

develop a healthier workforce by removing barriers to treatment

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Removing economic barriers to treatment for chronic conditions encourages patients to remain on recommended therapies according to a new study published today in the January/February 2008 issue of Health Affairs. The study, funded, in part, by GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK), investigated the impact on medication adherence of reducing prescription copayments -- in addition to existing disease management programs -- for employees of a leading service industry company.

Although a lack of medication adherence can be attributed to several factors,(1,2) the effects of high prescription drug copayments have been studied extensively since they have often been used by employers and insurers to control drug expenditures(3). Increasing copayments has been shown to decrease use of medications for chronic conditions.(4-6) But few studies have assessed the impact of decreasing copayments for important prescription medications.

The Impact of Decreasing Copayments on Medication Adherence in the Context of a Disease Management Program was a 12-month study in which the company, a global service provider, decreased copayments for the following medicines used to treat common chronic diseases:

-- Heart Disease: angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors,

angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), and beta-blockers

-- Diabetes: medications including oral therapies and insulin

-- High Cholesterol: statins

-- Asthma: inhaled corticosteroids

Copayment rates for generic medications were reduced from $5 to $0;
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SOURCE GlaxoSmithKline
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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