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National Quality Forum Endorses Measures to Improve Medication Safety and Quality
Date:8/17/2009

18 Endorsed Measures Address Use and Management of Medication

WASHINGTON, Aug. 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To improve the quality and safety of medication use in the United States, the National Quality Forum (NQF) endorsed 18 measures for managing over the counter and prescription medications. The 18 endorsed measures assess prescribing and use of appropriate medications and medication adherence, reconciliation, and monitoring. The measures are among the first to be endorsed for medication management and help to highlight gaps in measurement and quality improvement for medication use and adherence.

Nearly 90 percent of Medicare beneficiaries take prescription medicine and almost half use five or more different medications. Up to 40 percent of patients do not take their medications as prescribed, and an estimated 1.5 million preventable adverse drug events occur each year. Yet, there are few standards available to measure and improve the quality and safety of medication use and management.

"Medications offer relief and life-saving treatment to millions of people across the country each day, but more must be done to measure and improve the quality and safety of medication adherence and management," said Janet Corrigan, NQF president and CEO. "These measures are a starting point to improve quality and lay the groundwork for additional measure development for continued improvement in medication management."

The NQF-endorsed measures focus on measuring and improving adherence and management of medication for a range of conditions where medication nonadherance is prevalent and results in severe adverse outcomes. Conditions include diabetes, asthma, coronary artery disease, kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and schizophrenia.

The endorsed measures for adherence measure things like adherence of antipsychotics am
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SOURCE National Quality Forum
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