Key learning points

  • Rates of non-adherence to inhalers are high among patients with asthma and/or COPD so adherence should be assessed routinely to determine whether they need support
  • Healthcare professionals should be non-judgemental when discussing adherence with patients
  • Finding out a patient’s beliefs about using medication is a starting point for shared decision making to help improve adherence
  • A patient’s inhaler technique should be reviewed and corrected at every opportunity, and whenever a new device is prescribed
  • The patient’s preferences and health literacy should be considered when delivering information and formulating action plans
  • The patient’s medication should be optimised to limit side effects, simplify administration and avoid confusion

This educational site for healthcare professionals has been initiated and funded by Teva.