Theses Doctoral

Assessing Implementation Outcomes To Address Antihypertensive Medication Adherence In Sub-Saharan Africa: A Systematic Review And Focus Group Study

Egekeze, Chioma Ogechi

Annually, hypertension is responsible for over 10 million deaths. During the span of a decade, low-middle income countries (LMICs) have experienced the most negative change in progress towards decreasing hypertension prevalence. It is estimated that 46% of the adult population in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is hypertensive. When looking at solutions to address hypertension management in SSA, finding effective medication adherence interventions is the way forward.

The purpose of this study was to promote the implementation of evidence-based interventions for successful treatment and improved life quality of hypertensive adults in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the input of healthcare stakeholders. The specific aims were to: 1) determine what interventions for antihypertension medication adherence have been successfully implemented in SSA and assess their implementation outcomes, and 2) conduct a focus group with health practitioners to evaluate what interventions and implementation practices were supported. The methods used to complete this study were a systematic review and focus group sessions.

The systematic review was able to identify measurable implementation outcomes for the evidence based interventions found in the literature. The implementation outcomes identified in each of the included studies were categorized according to definitions derived from Proctor, et al.’s Outcomes for Implementation Research and Gyamfi, et al.’s Assessment of Descriptors of Scalability. The systematic review findings revealed that to establish antihypertensive medication adherence in SSA, the appropriateness of an intervention and the inclusion of health education are essential.

Additionally, in order to have successful implementation of an intervention, stakeholders need to commit to addressing systematic challenges emphasized in the literature. The focus group sessions helped to identify tangible actions that can be implemented in order to improve antihypertensive medication adherence in the region. Thematic analysis was used to organize themes found across the focus group transcriptions. During the focus group sessions, health practitioners addressed the practicality of implementing evidence-based interventions found in the literature within their communities. The focus group findings reveal key recommendations including increasing government participation and addressing barriers to implementation.

Overall, the data gathered across the studies shows that implementation is not easy to achieve. In addressing antihypertensive medication adherence, stakeholders must take into consideration how healthcare systems function as a whole. Although international and national guidelines provide excellent guidance for implementing evidence-based care, adjustments are needed in order to address population needs and scale interventions.

Geographic Areas


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Health and Behavior Studies
Thesis Advisors
Allegrante, John P.
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
May 22, 2024