Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research

Marissa Ayano Mes

Project: Pharmacists as the delivery channel for adherence support in asthma

PhD overview

PhD Title: Pharmacists as the delivery channel for adherence support in asthma

Funded by: NIHR CLAHRC North Thames

Supervisors: Professor Robert Horne & Professor Stephanie Taylor

Based at: University College London


headshot of Marissa Ayano Mes
Former Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research PhD student Marissa Ayano Mes

Non-adherence to inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) remains a key challenge in asthma care in the UK – it increases healthcare costs, morbidity and mortality. The growing pressure on UK primary care has increased interest in pharmacists as a potential delivery channel for adherence support.

This PhD examined the effectiveness of previous pharmacist-led interventions in improving adherence in adults with asthma (systematic review/meta-analysis), explored the perspectives of UK pharmacists (online questionnaire) and adults with asthma (qualitative interviews) on pharmacist-led adherence support, and assessed the feasibility and acceptability of a pharmacist-led adherence support intervention delivered in general practice.

Previous pharmacist-led interventions were shown to significantly improve adherence in adults with asthma, with effective interventions addressing both the ability and motivation to adhere to medication. Pharmacist-led adherence support demonstrated high acceptability among adults with asthma and UK pharmacists, but further adherence-focused support/training for pharmacists and improved public awareness of pharmacist-led care are needed in the UK.

About me

Marissa is a Dutch-Japanese researcher passionate about supporting self-management for long-term conditions, improving public health and tackling health inequalities.


  • Katzer CB, Mes MA, Chan AHY, Wileman V, Taylor SJC, Horne R. Acceptability of a theory-based adherence intervention for adults with asthma - a person-based approach. J Asthma. 2020;57(7):769-777.
  • Mes MA, Katzer CB, Wileman V, et al. Pharmacist-led adherence support in general practice: a qualitative interview study of adults with asthma. BMJ Open 2019; 9:e032084.

  • Mes, M.A., Chan, A.H.Y., Wileman, V. et al. Patient involvement in questionnaire design: tackling response error and burden. J of Pharm Policy and Pract 12, 17 (2019).
  • Marissa Ayano Mes, Caroline Brigitte Katzer, Amy Hai Yan Chan, Vari Wileman, Stephanie Jane Caroline Taylor, Rob Horne European Respiratory Journal 2018 52: 1800485.


This research was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care North Thames at Bart’s Health NHS Trust (NIHR CLAHRC North Thames).

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR, or the Department of Health and Social Care. The PhD is affiliated with the Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research.

Other collaborations include: the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, City & Hackney and Haringey Clinical Commissioning Groups, Cwm Taf University Health Board (Wales), St. Bartholomew’s Hospital (London)