Background: Polypill-based strategies have improved patient use of preventive cardiovascular disease (CVD) medications in clinical trials. Continued use in real-world settings relies on patients preferring a polypill over current treatment. Objective: Within a clinical trial assessing a CVD polypill-based strategy on patient adherence (Kanyini Guidelines Adherence with the Polypill study [Kanyini GAP]), we used discrete choice experiment (DCE) to assess the influence of polypill-based treatment attributes and patient characteristics on preferences for CVD preventive treatment.
Methods: A DCE survey was administered to Kanyini GAP participants, involving choices between 2 hypothetical treatment options and no treatment for CVD prevention. Attributes delineating a polypill from current treatment were assessed: out-of-pocket costs, tablet number, administration, and prescriber visit frequency. The odds ratios (ORs) for preferring treatment, trade-off between treatment-related attributes, and willingness to pay against other attributes were estimated.
Results: In all, 332 of 487 (68%) participants completed the survey. Active treatment, compared with no treatment, was chosen by 93%. Treatment preference decreased with increasing out-of-pocket cost (OR = 0.04; 95% CI = 0.03-0.05) and tablet number (OR = 0.69; 95% CI = 0.59-0.81). Out-of-pocket cost was the most important attribute. Respondents were willing to pay $3.45 per month for each tablet reduction. Education and household income significantly influenced treatment preference.
Conclusions: Assuming equivalent efficacy and safety of treatment options, the treatment-specific attributes that were assessed and influenced patient preference strongly accord with the posited advantages of the cardiovascular polypill. The study provides promising evidence that improvements in treatment adherence observed in CVD polypill trials may translate to the real world and potentially close treatment gaps in CVD prevention.