Adherence to Medical Cannabis Among Licensed Patients in Israel
Objectives: To evaluate adherence among Israeli patients who are licensed to use medical cannabis and to identify factors associated with adherence to medical cannabis. Methods: Ninety-five novice licensed patients were interviewed for this cross-sectional study. The questionnaire measured demographics, the perceived patient-physician relationship, and the level of patients’ active involvement in their healthcare. In addition, patients were queried about adverse effect(s) and about their overall satisfaction from this medical treatment. Results: Eighty percent (n=76) has been identified as adherent to medical cannabis use. Variables found associated with adherence were “country of origin” (immigrant status), “type of illness” (cancer vs. non-cancer), and “experiencing adverse effect(s).” Three predictors of adherence were found significant in a logistic regression model: “type of illness” (odds ratio [OR] 0.101), patient-physician relationship (OR 1.406), and level of patient activation (OR 1.132). 71.5% rated themselves being “completely satisfied” or “satisfied” from medical cannabis use. Conclusions: Our findings show a relatively high adherence rate for medical cannabis, as well as relative safety and high satisfaction among licensed patients. Additionally indicated is the need to develop and implement standardized education about this evolving field-to both patients and physicians.