Study examines benefits and barriers of Prescription Drug Lists for asthma medications

Study examines benefits and barriers of Prescription Drug Lists for asthma medications

Type of upper airway bacteria could influence asthma severity Researchers conducted a qualitative study to explore PDLs from the perspective of families affected by asthma. The study team interviewed 22 U.S. adults enrolled in HDHPs with PDLs who either had asthma, had a child with asthma, or both. Study results showed that while some members reported financial benefit and increased medication adherence as a result of utilizing PDLs, many experienced barriers to PDL use. Barriers included lack of awareness of the PDL benefit; the exclusion or limitation of certain medications from the PDL; and inconsistency or shifting of PDL benefits. Overall, researchers found that lack of awareness of members' access to PDLs impedes members' ability to seek out the lowest-cost medications. Employers serve as a source of information about PDLs, but greater outreach by health plans is needed to supplement member education and help facilitate use to maximize benefit. Our findings offer reasons to be optimistic that PDLs can help families manage asthma care costs and address disparities in asthma medication adherence." Alison Galbraith, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Population Medicine at the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute and Harvard Medical School Regarding future directions, lead author, Melissa Gilkey, PhD, Assistant Professor, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, adds, "Our results suggest that additional research is needed to improve PDL design and to ensure that families are aware of --and make full use of--this benefit." Source: Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute Journal reference: Gilkey, M.B., et al. (2020) Preventive Drug Lists as Tools for Managing Asthma Medication Costs. The American Journal of Managed Care . https://www.ajmc.com/journals/issue/2020/2020-vol26-n2/preventive-drug-lists-as-tools-for-managing-asthma-medication-costs .



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