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Health Literacy Impacts Compliance for Diabetes Patients

Apr 5, 2013

Diabetic patients on antidepressants who don’t understand basic health information are not as likely to continue taking medications….

Diabetic patients can experience depression; many patients have chronic depression requiring long-term treatment.


At the end of the 12 month study almost 66% of the diabetic patients had stopped taking their antidepressant.

Patients with poor health literacy were more likely to stop taking their antidepressants compared to patients with good health literacy.

Dr. Amy Bauer stated that very few of the patients with poor health literacy received an adequate course of treatment. Treatment is critical to prevent both recurrent depression and relapse.

Poor health literacy patients need more counseling and clearer explanations about the use of the medication and follow-up. These patients are also more likely to have poor control over their chronic conditions such as diabetes.

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_135323.html Preidt, Robert. "Poor ‘Health Literacy’ Keeps Patients From Taking Meds: MedlinePlus." U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 27 Mar. 2013. Web. 28 Mar. 2013.