Asthma Rx Home Delivery Improves Adherence

Aug 24, 2012
A recent Express Scripts study demonstrates that home delivery pharmacies significantly increase medication adherence among asthma patients.
  • Asthma

Approximately 24.6 million Americans suffer from asthma, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And since the condition is often poorly controlled, asthma is responsible for a half million hospitalizations in any given year. 

One of the major contributing factors to this high hospitalization rate is poor adherence to the medications prescribed to control asthma symptoms. Express Scripts research shows that less than half of asthma patients are adherent to their therapy. And the consequences are significant – published literature suggests that up to 60% of asthma-related hospitalizations are associated with nonadherence.

Fortunately, these poor adherence rates can be improved with one simple change.

Home Delivery Pharmacy

A recent Express Scripts study published in the American Journal of Pharmacy Benefits shows that home delivery pharmacy is an important stand-alone intervention in helping asthma patients reach optimal adherence to their controller medication. Patients who used home delivery achieved adherence rates of nearly 63%, while those using retail pharmacies were less than 40% adherent.

The study also found that:

  • Adherence to asthma medications during the first year of therapy was generally sub-optimal.
  • Patients using home delivery were more than twice as likely to achieve optimal adherence compared to patients using retail pharmacy.
  • There were more home delivery users in the Midwest and more retail users in the Western United States.

For more information about the Express Scripts Pharmacy, visit


Study Methodology:

  • A total of 6,014 commercially insured patients aged 12 to 63 years with a medical diagnosis for asthma.
  • Patients were followed for one year after starting a new course of asthma controller therapy.
  • Findings were based on a retrospective analysis of nationally representative medical and pharmacy claims data.

Author Bio

Lab Staff
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