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Nearly 30 Percent of Women Fail to Pick Up New Prescriptions for Osteoporosis, Kaiser Permanente Study Finds
Date:4/18/2013

PASADENA, Calif., April 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 30 percent of women failed to pick up their bisphosphonate prescriptions, a medication that is most commonly used to treat osteoporosis and similar bone diseases, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published this week in the journal Osteoporosis International. The failure to pick up these newly prescribed medications, called primary nonadherence, can lead to an increased risk of fractures for these patients.

The study examined the electronic health records of 8,454 women, ages 55 years or older, who were Kaiser Permanente Southern California members between December 2009 and March 2011 and were prescribed a new bisphosphonate medication. It found that 29.5 percent of these women did not pick up their prescription within 60 days of the order date. In particular, older women and those who utilized the emergency department in the prior year were less likely to pick up their bisphosphonate prescription. However, women taking other prescription medications and those who had been hospitalized in the prior year were more likely to pick up their bisphosphonate prescription, according to the researchers.

"Although bisphosphonates have been proven to reduce the risk of osteoporotic fracture, low adherence to these medications is common, which contributes to serious and costly health problems," said Kristi Reynolds , PhD, MPH, a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente and lead author of the study. "This study simultaneously examined patient and prescribing provider characteristics and helped identify certain factors associated with why patients failed to pick up their new prescriptions."

Researchers also found that women who received their bisphosphonate prescription from a physician practicing 10 or more years at Kaiser Permanente were more likely to pick up their medication than women who received the prescription from a phys
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SOURCE Kaiser Permanente
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