Family carers’ experiences of managing older relative's medications:Insights from the MEMORABLE study


Objective: To explore the burdens experienced by family carers who support older relatives to manage their medications at home. Methods: This study, based on a larger UK medication management study: MEdication Management in Older people: Realist Approaches Based on Literature and Evaluation (MEMORABLE), reports on findings from family carer interviews (n = 16). The five stages of medication management, identified in MEMORABLE, were used to inform the analysis. Results: Family carers described being involved in some or all five of the MEMORABLE stages to help manage older relatives’ medications. Their capacity to undertake this role was sometimes limited by the complex workload involved as well personal circumstances such as time, distance and relationships. Family carers perceived that their knowledge and skills in medication management improved with experience, but also described stress associated with information lag and gaps, risk and responsibility, and loss. They described medication management burdens that needed mitigation: ambiguity, concealment, unfamiliarity, fragmentation and in particular exclusion, conflicted interests and expectation of coping. Conclusion: To help mitigate these burdens, family carers should receive better information, training and support for this role. Practice implications: Continued reliance on family carers for medication management requires strategic recognition in policy, funding and practice.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: College of Health & Life Sciences > Aston Pharmacy School
College of Health & Life Sciences > Chronic and Communicable Conditions
College of Health & Life Sciences
Additional Information: © 2021, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Funding Information: This study re-analyses a family carer subset from the UK medication management study funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR): MEdication Management in Older people: Realist Approaches Based on Literature and Evaluation (MEMORABLE) [14–16] . MEMORABLE aimed to understand medication management from the perspective of older people living with co-morbidities treated with complex medication regimens, as well as family carers and health and care practitioners. Two aspects of MEMORABLE inform this study. Publisher Copyright: © 2022
Uncontrolled Keywords: Burden,Family carers,Medication management,MEMORABLE,Older people,Medicine(all)
Publication ISSN: 1873-5134
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Related URLs: http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
https://www.sci ... 7953?via%3Dihub (Publisher URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2021-12-31
Published Online Date: 2021-12-31
Accepted Date: 2021-12-30
Authors: Lawson, Sally
Mullan, Judy
Wong, Geoff
Zaman, Hadar
Booth, Andrew
Watson, Anne
Maidment, Ian (ORCID Profile 0000-0003-4152-9704)

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