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Research Letter
April 2017

Effectiveness of Medication Adherence Reminders Tied to “Fresh Start” DatesA Randomized Clinical Trial

Author Affiliations
  • 1Olin Business School, Washington University, St Louis, Missouri
  • 2The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  • 3The Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  • 4Humana Inc, Louisville, Kentucky

Copyright 2017 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.

JAMA Cardiol. 2017;2(4):453-455. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2016.5794

Low medication adherence is problematic.1 Well-designed reminders can increase adherence,2 but when should reminders be sent to maximize their effect? Prior observational studies3 and laboratory experiments4 have shown that engagement in healthy activities increases considerably following fresh-start dates: life and calendar events signaling the beginning of new cycles (eg, birthdays or New Year’s Day).3,4 Extending this insight, we conducted what is, to our knowledge, the first randomized clinical trial examining whether sending medication adherence reminders around fresh-start dates and highlighting these dates as an opportunity for positive changes could boost reminders’ effectiveness.

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