Navigation Links
New Survey Shows Seniors Struggle Under the Weight of Multiple Medication Use
Date:12/29/2009

FRANKLIN LAKES, N.J., Dec. 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- America's seniors are being overwhelmed by the number of prescription drugs they take on a daily basis. According to a new national survey of more than 1,000 people ages 65 and older who use medications, more than half (51 percent) take at least five different prescription drugs regularly and one in four take between 10 and 19 pills each day.

The challenge of managing multiple medications is clear - nearly three in five (57 percent) of those polled admit that they forget to take their medications. Furthermore, the more drugs they use, the more likely they are not to remember to take them. Among those using five or more medications, 63 percent say they forget doses; a higher rate as compared to 51 percent among people who take fewer medicines.

"It's usually the patients who are in worse health who are taking large numbers of prescription drugs. For these people, especially, taking their medications properly and regularly is critical," said Dr. Woody Eisenberg, vice president and chief medical officer of Medco Retiree Solutions. "The problem is that the more medications prescribed, the harder it is for older people to manage them well and know essential information that can help prevent medication-related harm."

The survey, conducted by Kelton Research on behalf of Medco Health Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MHS) also reveals what seniors don't know about their medications could potentially harm them, and the more medications they take, the less they seem to know. More than one third (34 percent) of seniors using five or more prescription drugs do not feel knowledgeable enough about the drugs they're prescribed or their potential side effects, and 35 percent are not sure they can name all the medications they use.

"Being well-informed about medications is crucial for patient safety," said Dr. Eisenberg. "To reduce drug risks, patients should always know the names of the drugs they take, why they take them, and any drugs they should avoid to prevent potential side effects."

Costly Concerns

Multiple medication use is also taking its toll on the financial health of America's seniors. The ability to afford their drugs is the top concern among 40 percent of seniors taking five or more prescription medications daily, followed by their worry over drug side effects (23 percent) and interactions (17 percent). Among those enrolled in a Medicare Part D plan, 37 percent are most concerned about not being able to afford their medications, and almost half (49 percent) want to know how to delay or avoid falling into the donut hole or coverage gap - the phase in which the beneficiary is responsible for the full cost of their drugs.

The survey found 60 percent of Medicare beneficiaries have taken some steps to delay reaching the donut hole, such as using generic medications (76 percent) and asking for free samples from their doctors (39 percent). But just 27 percent use mail order to avoid the donut hole, despite the fact that on average, seniors surveyed estimated that using mail order saved them about $540 a year and 19 percent estimated they saved at least $1,000 annually.

"The Medicare prescription drug program has made a huge difference in making prescription drugs more affordable for seniors; but for those taking multiple medications, the costs can still be a major burden - especially if you end up in the donut hole," said Dr. Eisenberg. "It's essential that enrollees take advantage of cost-savings opportunities so they can afford the drugs they need to maintain their health."

Medco is launching an initiative to assist seniors and Medicare beneficiaries in better managing their medications and getting the most out of their Medicare plan. As part of the initiative, Medco has developed a free consumer booklet called "The Smart Guide to Managing Medications." It provides tips to help seniors better manage their medications and their costs, and includes information to discuss with their physicians and pharmacists about the drugs they're prescribed. The guide also offers ways to manage medication costs within the Medicare Part D benefit. "The Smart Guide to Managing Medications" is available free in a downloadable version at www.medcomedicare.com. Seniors can also request a copy through the mail by sending a postcard requesting "The Smart Guide to Managing Medications" to: "The Smart Guide to Managing Medications"; PO Box 8007; Parsippany, NJ 07054-8007.

Medco Medicare Part D PDP members have access to a number of support services that can help them better manage their medication routine. These services include: specialist pharmacists trained in the medications used to treat chronic and complex conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol; Medicare advisors available 24/7 to help seniors understand how to lower cost medication options and Coverage Gap communications that inform members about their proximity to the coverage gap and educate them about how to delay reaching the Coverage Gap and lower their overall annual prescription costs.

About Medco

Medco Health Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MHS) is pioneering the world's most advanced pharmacy® and its clinical research and innovations are part of Medco making medicine smarter(TM) for more than 60 million members.

With more than 20,000 employees dedicated to improving patient health and reducing costs for a wide range of public and private sector clients, and 2008 revenue exceeding $51 billion, Medco ranks 45th on the Fortune 500 list and is named among the world's most innovative, most admired and most trustworthy companies.

For more information, go to http://www.medcohealth.com.

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause results to differ materially from those set forth in the statements. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed, and actual results may differ materially from those projected. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the risks and uncertainties that affect our business, particularly those mentioned in the Risk Factors section of the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

SOURCE Medco Health Solutions, Inc.


'/>"/>
SOURCE Medco Health Solutions, Inc.
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine technology :

1. Boston Scientific Announces Settlement of DOJ Investigation Relating to Post-Market Surveys Conducted By Guidant
2. Cimzia Draws Even With Simponi at Six Months Post Launch According to Recent BioTrends Survey
3. Surveyed European Oncologists Cite Cost Most Frequently as the Factor Preventing Their Use of Avastin for Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer
4. Majority of Surveyed Pharmacy Directors Expect To Cover Pfizers Tanezumab If It Is Approved for the Treatment of Chronic Pain
5. Statement From the Consumer Healthcare Products Association(CHPA) on Annual Monitoring the Future Survey on Drug Abuse
6. Praxis EMR Wins Top Rankings in 2009 AAFP EHR User Satisfaction Survey
7. Doctors Cite Time, Low Reimbursement As Barriers To Providing Comprehensive Diabetes Care, Survey Results Show
8. Survey Finds Mothers Take Childrens Health Into Their Own Hands
9. Euro RSCG Life Presents Proprietary Survey Insights at Food and Drug Administration Hearing on Pharmaceutical Promotion via Online and Social Media
10. Pharmacists Report Patients do not Treat Cold and Flu Symptoms Early Enough, New Survey Shows
11. Ninety Eight Percent of Surveyed Rheumatologists Will Prescribe Roches Actemra for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/23/2017)... REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Feb. 23, 2017 Nevro Corp. ... innovative evidence-based solutions for the treatment of chronic pain, today ... ended December 31, 2016. 2016 Accomplishment & ... the full year 2016, an increase of 228% as reported, ... million for 2016, an increase of 612% over the prior ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... 23, 2017 Research and Markets has announced ... Strategies - 2016" report to their offering. ... The latest research Oesophageal Cancer ... and benchmarks in the global Oesophageal Cancer market. The ... are the key drugs marketed for Oesophageal Cancer and their clinical ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... , Feb. 23, 2017 Regulus ... the discovery and development of innovative medicines targeting microRNAs, ... year 2016 financial results on Thursday, March 2, 2017 ... a conference call and webcast on March 2, 2017 ... and full year 2016 financial results and provide a ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
(Date:2/26/2017)... ... 26, 2017 , ... IndustryArchive.Org . is announcing a new way for ... will now only pay for B.A.N.T. quality sales leads based on the Sellers decision ... the new reality that B2B buyers are controlling the sales process via the Internet ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... , ... February 26, 2017 , ... ... disease (PD) in persons with a specific LRRK2 mutation, according to a study ... Previous studies have provided evidence of a link between pesticides and incidence of ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... February 24, 2017 , ... Only two months after the official ... (ILTM) show in Cannes (France), XO Private has initiated a second print-run of its ... measures almost a metre across when open, weighs in at more than six kilos, ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... The Smart Machine Age is here, and it’s disrupting ... percent of all jobs in the United States may be taken over by technology ... the aggressive know-it-all who steamrolls over colleagues is drawing to a close. Success will ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... Australia (PRWEB) , ... February 24, 2017 , ... The ... AU) offers Erik Schanssema ’s true account of his paramedic experiences. Schanssema describes ... stress disorder and his attempts to overcome them. , Schanssema, initially unsure of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):