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New Study Finds Patient Adherence to Statin Medications Reduces Hospitalizations and Healthcare Costs
Date:6/7/2011

FRANKLIN LAKES, N.J., June 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Patients with high cholesterol who regularly take their cholesterol-lowering medications have significantly fewer hospitalizations from cardiovascular problems and can reduce their health care costs by as much as $944 over 18 months, according to research published in the June 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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The study conducted by the Medco Research Institute®, the research subsidiary of Medco Health Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MHS), examined the financial impact of patient adherence to statins -- medications that help reduce high cholesterol levels.  Statins include such blockbuster drugs as Lipitor® (atorvastatin calcium) and Crestor® (rosuvastatin calcium), as well as widely used generics such as simvastatin and pravastatin.

The study found that the adherent patient group had significantly lower odds of cardiovascular-related hospitalizations compared to the non-adherent group.  Health care costs for patients who were least compliant with their medications were nine percent higher than the patients who followed their prescribed treatment regimen.  Those who took their statins regularly had higher drug costs that were offset by lower medical costs leading to lower total healthcare costs.

"It's important for patients to understand that taking statins as prescribed does more than simply lower cholesterol – they help lower the patient's risk of heart attack and stroke.  And now, as this study suggests, their health costs could be lower, too," said JoAnne Foody, M.D., a co-author of the study and Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Wellness Program at Brigham and Women's Hospital.  As health care providers, we must
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SOURCE Medco Health Solutions, Inc.
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