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Dose administration aids for delivering low-dose combination blood pressure lowering therapy

Dr Emily Atkins, Institution: University of New South Wales

2018 Vanguard Grant

Years funded: 2019-2020


Appropriate management of high blood pressure is critical for reducing the risk of cardiovascular events. Unfortunately, two thirds of people treated do not reach recommended blood pressure targets and remain at high risk of future heart attacks. Recent work demonstrated the efficacy of single-pills containing multiple blood pressure medicines in low doses, but these are not yet available for prescription. Using a dose administration aid, where multiple low-dose pills are packaged together and labelled with the day and time of administration, offers a simple solution with existing products and services. The Australian government committed $100 million annually to support DAAs in the sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement, and so many pharmacies now provide this service.

This research projects aims to determine if a strategy of delivering customised low-dose combination blood pressure lowering therapy using a dose administration aid is more effective than usual care in people with high blood pressure. A novel trial-within-cohort design is planned using routinely collected health information from general practice, due to recent investment in increasing the capabilities of Medicine Insight, a government-funded quality improvement program managed by NPS MedicineWise. This innovative design aligns with current movements to utilise existing cohorts and routinely collected health information for future clinical trials in Australia.

The potential benefits are (1) potential for improved blood pressure management through implementation of low dose combination therapy with dose administration aids, and (2) demonstration of the trial-within-cohort design with Medicine Insight.

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