ABSTRACT

The trick to having tested, effective prescriptions is to follow them well. Consider an illustration from medicine. Imagine two different people become sick and go to a doctor. Both of them are prescribed a 10-day antibiotic regimen. Both patients feel improvement after 4 days of treatment. Feeling better, Patient 1 decides to stop taking antibiotics on the fifth day, whereas Patient 2 continues the entire 10-day treatment. In the short term, there may be no major differences between the two patients; however, taking only part of the treatment regimen can lead to substantial differences in the long term. Patient 1 is more likely than Patient 2 to relapse with the same or similar sickness. Another result is that Patient 1’s disease may mutate and become resistant to antibiotic treatment (e.g., MRSA virus). Although only an analogy, the point remains: following effective prescriptions well can lead to the best outcomes.