Medication Adherence Clubs: a potential solution to managing large numbers of stable patients with multiple chronic diseases in informal settlements.
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OBJECTIVES: To assess the care of hypertension, diabetes mellitus and/or HIV patients enrolled into Medication Adherence Clubs (MACs). METHODS: Retrospective descriptive study was carried out using routinely collected programme data from a primary healthcare clinic at informal settlement in Nairobi, Kenya. All patients enrolled into MACs were selected for the study. MACs are nurse-facilitated mixed groups of 25-35 stable hypertension, diabetes mellitus and/or HIV patients who met quarterly to confirm their clinical stability, have brief health discussions and receive medication. Clinical officer reviewed MACs yearly, when a patient developed complications or no longer met stable criteria. RESULTS: A total of 1432 patients were enrolled into 47 clubs with 109 sessions conducted between August 2013 and August 2014. There were 1020 (71%) HIV and 412 (29%) non-communicable disease patients. Among those with NCD, 352 (85%) had hypertension and 60 (15%) had DM, while 12 had HIV concurrent with hypertension. A total of 2208 consultations were offloaded from regular clinic. During MAC attendance, blood pressure, weight and laboratory testing were completed correctly in 98-99% of consultations. Only 43 (2%) consultations required referral for clinical officer review before their routine yearly appointment. Loss to follow-up from the MACs was 3.5%. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates the feasibility and early efficacy of MACs for mixed chronic disease in a resource-limited setting. It supports burden reduction and flexibility of regular clinical review for stable patients. Further assessment regarding long-term outcomes of this model should be completed to increase confidence for deployment in similar contexts. © 2015 The Authors. Tropical Medicine & International Health Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.