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The influence of personal communities on the self-management of medication taking: A wider exploration of medicine work

Cheraghi-Sohi, Sudeh; Jeffries, Mark; Stevenson, Fiona ; Ashcroft, Darren M; Carr, Matthew; Oliver, Kathryn ; Rogers, Anne

Chronic Illness. 2014;.

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Objectives: There is a lack of focus on the broader social context, networks and influences on medicine-taking as part of illness work. This work adopts a social network approach and seeks to explicate the nature of medicine-taking work that people with multiple long-term conditions (LTCs) and their social network members (SNMs) do in attempting to take their medications on a daily basis, the division of labour amongst these members and when and why SNMs become involved in that work. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 20 people who had multiple LTCs. Medication networks were constructed and the division of labour in relation to medication-work was explored. Results: Four types of medication-work emerged: medication articulation, surveillance, emotional and informational. Involvement of SNMs in medication-work was selective, performed primarily by family members, within the home. Involvement reflected network composition and/or an individual’s conceptualisation/presentation of self. Discussion: Our findings support and extend the conceptualisation of routine medicine-taking as a type of work. Furthermore, we illustrate the involvement of SNMs in aspects of medicine-work. Health professionals should explore and support the role of SNMs in medicine-taking where possible. Future research should explore the implications of network types and compositions on medicine-taking and associated work.

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13th June, 2014
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Created by:
Cheraghi-Sohi, Sudeh
12th June, 2014, 07:19:31
Last modified by:
Cheraghi-Sohi, Sudeh
Last modified:
13th June, 2014, 14:09:52

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