Another Drug Problem

If you know an elderly person, you will most likely agree with this:

An increasing number of elderly patients nationwide are on multiple medications to treat chronic diseases, raising their chances of dangerous drug interactions and serious side effects. Often the drugs are prescribed by different specialists who don’t communicate with each other. If those patients are hospitalized, doctors making the rounds add to the list — and some of the drugs they prescribe may be unnecessary or unsuitable.

That then leads to this:

Older adults account for about 35 percent of all hospital stays but more than half of the visits that are marred by drug-related complications, according to a 2014 action plan by the Department of Health and Human Services. Such complications add about three days to the average stay, the agency said.

One would think with all of the technology involved with medicine nowadays that this would be easily prevented.  It seems that drugs prescribed for a patient would be cross-referenced and any problems would be instantly detected.  Again, if you know an elderly person that has been near a hospital, you know that’s not the case.

I hate to be the one who sees the boogey man behind every door, but one also gets that idea that drug companies are just trying to sell more drugs versus helping to heal people.


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