Background: Adherence to treatment is a primary determinant of treatment success. Caregiver support can influence medication adherence in people with cognitive impairment. This study sought to characterize medication adherence in older people with dementia from the caregivers’ perspective, and to identify influencing factors.
Methods: Caregivers caring for a person with dementia and living in the community were eligible to complete the survey. Bayesian profile regression was applied to identify determinants of medication adherence measured using the Adherence to Refills and Medication Scale.
Results: Out of the 320 caregivers who participated in the survey, Bayesian profile regression on 221 participants identified two groups: Profile 1 (55 caregivers) with a mean adherence rate of 0.69 (80% Credible Interval (CrI): 0.61–0.77), and Profile 2 (166 caregivers) with a mean adherence rate of 0.80 (80% CrI: 0.77–0.84). Caregivers in Profile 1 were characterized with below data average scores for the following: cognitive functioning, commitment or intention, self-efficacy, and health knowledge, which were all above the data average in Profile 2, except for health knowledge. Caregivers in Profile 1 had a greater proportion of care recipients taking more than five medications and with late-stage dementia. Trade, technical, or vocational training was more common among the caregivers in Profile 1. Profile 2 caregivers had a better patient–provider relationship and less medical problems.
Conclusions: Bayesian profile regression was useful in understanding caregiver factors that influence medication adherence. Tailored interventions to the determinants of medication adherence can guide the development of evidence-based interventions.