Jai-Rong Wu, PhD, RN, is a nurse researcher who studies medication adherence with patients who have congestive heart failure. She explains that older patients are particularly at risk because if they don’t take the medications they are fifty-percent more likely to be admitted to a hospital for complications that result from non-compliance. And, this leads to increased cost of care.
“If people take good care of themselves and take their medications as prescribed, then chronic disease can be managed to provide a good quality of life,” she says.
Dr. Wu, who spent six years at the University of Kentucky School of Nursing as a doctoral student and researcher, has developed an intervention study to help patients adhere to their medical regimen. She has identified the reasons why people do not adhere to what is prescribed. At UNC Chapel Hill School of Nursing she will be building a collaborative team to do another intervention study, collecting more data, analyzing it, and recommending ways senior can improve their cardiovascular health well into old age.