Bretton created his first adherence program, called Care-Fill, right out of pharmacy school. Each month, he filled medication planners for his patients on several drugs. But the cumbersome Sunday-through-Saturday pill boxes caused as many problems as they solved, and the program was short-lived.
“We were filling people’s plastic boxes, four weeks of planners, for them,” states Bretton. “They spilled and fell, and then patients were taking meds out of the Monday box on Sunday. It was more of a hassle than a benefit.” As a result, the program went by the wayside.
One in five Medicare patients is readmitted to the hospital within 30 days, and patient confusion about medication is the leading trigger to their readmission. Bretton knew there had to be a better way to help his patients adhere to their medication regimens and keep them out of the hospital.