Article Text

THU0490-HPR Development of medication assessment tools specific for rheumatoid arthritis
  1. L. Grech1,2,
  2. B. Coleiro2,3,
  3. A.A. Borg3,4,
  4. A. Serracino Inglott2,
  5. L.M. Azzopardi2,
  6. V. Ferrito2
  1. 1Pharmacy, Mater Dei Hospital
  2. 2Pharmacy, University of Malta
  3. 3Medicine, Mater Dei Hospital
  4. 4Medicine, University of Malta, Msida, Malta


Background Medication assessment tools,first introduced in heart failure management, are evidence-based instruments intended for the evaluation of prescribing trends and monitoring of adherence to established guidelines. To-date medication assessment tools have been implemented in the management of heart failure, coronary disease, cancer and asthma 1-4.

Objectives The objective of the study was to develop medication assessment tools specific for rheumatoid arthritis in order to provide a systematic and standardised instrument ensuring evidence based practice.

Methods Guidelines, recommendations and standards on rheumatoid arthritis and its management as set out by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), the European League against Rheumatism (EULAR), the British Society for Rheumatology (BSR) and the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) were used to develop the Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Assessment Tool. The summary of product characteristics for each drug included in the Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Assessment Tool were used as reference for criteria related to pharmacological properties. The medication assessment tool was designed in the form of a table bearing in mind that the tool will be used in a busy clinic where documentation can be time consuming. The Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Assessment Tool was reviewed by a panel of experts (n=8) who assessed applicability of the tool to the practical scenario, presentation, robustness and validity of the data provided.

Results The developed Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Assessment Tool was designed in the form of a table consisting of 11 separate sections. Each section included an average of 5 (SD =1.95) criteria. The table design of the medication assessment tool allows the investigator to easily tick whether each criteria included in the medication assessment tool is being adhered to or not. References for each criteria included were also given in the medication assessment tool.

Conclusions Medication assessment tools have been documented as effective instruments providing systematic checklist approach to evidence based medicine. The developed Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Assessment Tool was designed to be used in a busy adult rheumatology out-patient clinic as part of an ongoing pharmaceutical care service in order to further improve the overall multidisciplinary service offered.

  1. Hakonsen GD, Hudson S, Loennechen T. Design and validation of medication assessment tool for cancer pain management. Pharm World Sci. 2006;28(6):342-351.

  2. Hakonsen GD, Strelec P, Campbell D, Hudson S, Loennechen T. Adherence to medication guieline criteria in pain management. Journal of pain and symptom management. 2009;37(6):1006-1018.

  3. Hui-Ping L, You-Mei L, Hudson S, Johnson J, Hsiu-Yu C. Design and validation of a medication assessment tool to evaluate the quality of medication use based on international guidelines of asthma management in children aged from 5-12 years. Abstract presented at the ACCP-ESCP 2009 conference, Florida.

  4. McAnaw J, Hudson S, McGlynn S. Development of an evidence-based medication assessment tools to demonstrate the quality of drug therapy use in patients with heart failure. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice. 2003;11:R17.

Disclosure of Interest None Declared

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