Date of Submission



The aim of this research study was to measure the length of time that coronary heart disease patients remain compliant with lipid lowering medications and, if they ceased taking their medications, to investigate the reasons why. Scope: The research was designed as a prospective cohort study, enrolling 120 randomly selected patients who were diagnosed with coronary heart disease by angiography and followed up for one year. Individual participants were followed up, via monthly telephone interviews, for a twelve-month period, using standardised questionnaires. Conclusions: At month twelve, all subjects reported compliance with lipid lowering therapy. This result was unexpected and inconsistent with previous research that reported compliance rates averaging 50% within twelve months after therapy initiation. Although not within the scope of the study, several factors may have been influential in determining this 100% compliance to lipid lowering medications. Nearly half of the sample surveyed stated that the most important factor was the health benefit of lipid lowering medication. All subjects were prescribed lipid lowering medication prior to discharge from hospital. Current guidelines from the National Heart Foundation of Australia now specify this, whereas, prior to 2003, this was not the case. This may be the principal factor that accounts for the significant disparity between the results of this investigation and previous studies. Another explanation may embrace the fact that, because all patients were privately insured, they placed a higher personal value on healthcare that had been "paid for", as opposed to receiving "free" healthcare in the public hospital system.


School of Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedicine

Document Type


Access Rights

Open Access


146 pages

Degree Name

Master of Nursing (Research) (MN(Res))


Faculty of Health Sciences

Included in

Nursing Commons