I wanted to answer the following questions so that I could design my experiment to be as realistic as possible:
- What is the most common form of temporary medication?
- What is the typical (or an example) length of time someone might be asked to take temporary medication for?
- What is a typical administration recommendation for how the temporary medication should be taken? e.g. twice per day with food, after food, before food, on an empty stomach?
Insights from a pharmacist about short-term prescriptions
Speaking with a pharmacist, I learnt that antibiotics (e.g. Amoxicillin) are the most common short-term prescription medication. The most typical length of treatment can vary between 3-7 days.
The frequency of administration depends on the medication. Some are prescribed to be taken twice daily, preferably after food. Amoxicillin is generally prescribed to be taken three times a day and it doesn’t matter if it is taken on an empty stomach or not.
The experiment design
Using these insights and some further research online, I have decided to create an experiment that;
- lasts 7 days
- requires the participants to take one pill twice a day
- requires a 12-hour time gap between pills
I have chosen to ask participants to take their medication twice a day for the initial experiment so that I can hone the behaviour intervention, then scale up to three times a day for later experiments.
The literature online also recommends that if you miss a dose, you should take the missed dose as soon as you remember it.
However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
However, so I can more easily measure adherence I will ask the participants not to make up any missed doses.
First, we notice the trigger. Second, we associate the trigger with a target behavior. Third, the trigger happens when we are both motivated and able to perform the behavior.
A BEHAVIOR MODEL FOR PERSUASIVE DESIGN. BJ FOGG
Beginning the study
After reading and signing the consent form, the participants will be divided into two groups. Groups A and B.
Random Group Creator was used to randomise the participants between groups.
Welcoming participants to the study
Participants will be sent a welcome message via SMS message and email with details about the study. The messages sent to each group will be almost identical except information about the condition they are in; experimental or control.