Medication Adherence

Troy Lizyness, RPh

Pharmacist Supervisor

Orlando, FL

Q: What is medication adherence? Why is it important?


Medication adherence means taking medication correctly. It refers to how well you follow the steps for taking a drug just as it is prescribed. This means taking it at the right time, the right dose and the right frequency. Doing this can help improve your treatment. It can lead to better health outcomes, especially if you have a chronic condition. Adherence can help you avoid unexpected doctor or hospital visits. This can help lower treatment costs.

Q: What are some tips to help improve adherence?


There can be a lot of things to juggle when taking a new medication. A few things might help you stay on track:

  • Make sure you know how and when to take your medication. If you have questions, ask your pharmacist.
  • Try alarms and digital reminders. Daily and weekly pill boxes might help, too. These can help you stay organized and on schedule.
  • Take note of any side effects. Work with your providers to manage side effects that make it hard to keep up with your medication regimen.
  • Make a list of any prescription drugs, over-the-counter (OTC) medicines or supplements you are taking. Keep this medication list up to date. Share it with your providers.

Q: Should I tell my healthcare providers if I stop or start taking a medication or supplement?


Yes. It’s important to tell your providers about all your prescriptions, OTC medications, vitamins and supplements. Tell them about any changes in what you are taking. This helps them make the right decisions about your treatment.

Tell your providers if you start taking a new medication or supplement. Not sharing this information could leave you at risk for health problems. Some drugs might interact poorly. This could cause unexpected side effects.

Talk to your providers if you feel the need to stop taking a medication for any reason. Tell them if you have trouble with side effects. Ask for help if a dosing schedule is too challenging. Talk with them if you are concerned about the cost of a drug. Your healthcare team is there to support you.

Q: What should I do if I miss a dose?


Missing a dose of medication could affect how well it works. If you miss a dose, check the information that came with your medicine. It should explain what to do for a missed dose. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can answer questions and give guidance about when to take your next dose.

About Troy

“My father is a pharmacist. Seeing his sense of satisfaction from helping people inspired my own interest in this field. I knew from the time I was a teenager that becoming a pharmacist was something I wanted to do. My wife is also a pharmacist, and we both share a passion for caring for those with different medical conditions.”