In search of...barriers to medication adherence:  Yendelela Levana Cuffee

Yanda CuffeeYendelela Levana Cuffee, graduate student in the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, talks about her grant Predictors of Medication Adherence Among African Americans with Hypertension, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality:  one year, $29,256.

My research is focused on identifying factors that contribute to medication non-adherence among African Americans. The vast majority of existing medication adherence research has focused on financial barriers to medication adherence, such as income and education. In my research, I want to explore non-traditional barriers to adherence, specifically social factors, such as trust in physicians, reported experiences of discrimination and the use of home remedies. 

Adherence to antihypertensive medications is an essential aspect of managing hypertension. Understanding the factors that contribute to medication nonadherence will provide opportunities for more effective interventions designed for promoting better adherence.

I’ve always been interested in science. I became interested in researching health disparities while working as a clinical research associate, where part of my responsibilities was to manage clinical studies and monitor study sites. I noticed that our sites had minority patients, but the patients were not enrolling in the clinical studies, and I wanted to better understand the factors that were preventing minority patients from enrolling in clinical research studies.

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