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Medication Mismanagement Is a Growing Danger

Reeves-Sain's MediPACK Offers Solution

MURFREESBORO, Tenn., April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Medication mistakes at home have created a dangerous situation in America according to a recent national study, and the need for a new approach to medication management is critical, according to Shane Reeves, D. Pharm and co-owner of Reeves-Sain.

Reeves said we need to move away from the traditional system of bottles to a clearer, more easily managed system, and his company has developed the product to do that.

The Reeves-Sain product, called MediPACK, pre-packages a consumer's medications in easy to manage, easy to carry plastic packs with a day's total medication included in one package. The system eliminates error because the individual packages contain only the prescribed medications for that day. The information on the outside of the package details the medications included, when they are to be taken and what day they are scheduled for.

The information is scary, says Reeves. Speaking to the Fearless Caregiver conference in Nashville last month, he said, "The fact that deaths have risen dramatically in this relatively short period is evidence that the medication management system has changed. More dosage management of a wider range of drugs, including painkillers, is now in the hands of the patient, many of whom are older and less able to manage a large number of medications."

The findings, based on nearly 50 million U.S. death certificates, were published earlier this year by the Archives of Internal Medicine. Deaths from medication mistakes at home increased from 1,132 deaths in 1983 to 12,426 in 2004. Adjusted for population growth, that amounts to an increase of more than 700 percent during that time. The increase in deaths was highest among baby boomers, people in their 40s and 50s.

"The amount of medical supervision is going down, and the amount of responsibility put on the patient's shoulders is going up," said lead author David Phillips of the University of California-San Diego.

People share prescriptions at an alarming rate, said boomer Dr. J. Lyle Bootman, the University of Arizona's pharmacy dean, who was not involved in the research. One recent study found 23 percent of people say they have loaned their prescription medicine to someone else and 27 percent say they have borrowed someone else's prescription drugs.

Reeves-Sain's MediPACK system has been available in nursing homes and assisted living centers through Reeves-Sain's extended care division, but the company saw an opportunity to extend it for general use. Because the medications are pre-packaged they can be ordered anywhere and Reeves-Sain handles delivery.

Reeves-Sain, founded in 1980 and locally owned throughout its existence, is a comprehensive medical operation, providing everything from medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, diabetes and oxygen services and a range of other programs such as an in-store soda shoppe. The company also operates a pharmacy-only service in the Murfreesboro Medical Clinic. For more information visit

SOURCE Reeves-Sain
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