Patients lack key Rx information

  • by: |
  • 09/30/2006
This is news?

Well, since it's true it's worth repeating, and since it's based on "a new study" it's worth reporting on. Still, I'm surpised that it even made the UPI wire. So much the better.

Here goes ...

"Patients who leave the doctor's office with a prescription may be leaving something important behind."

Car keys? No, they're leaving, brace yourself, without "the information they need to take their medicines correctly."

In fact, according a new study (see, told you) from UCLA (go Bruins!) doctors only give their patients 62% of five "key pieces" of information:

* Patients were told the name of a new medication only 74% of the time.

* Patients were told why they were taking a new medication only 87% of the time.

* Only 30% of patients were told how long to take the new prescription.

* Only 55% of patients were told how many tablets to take.

* Only 58% for both frequency and appropriate timing (with food, etc.)

And the winner is:

* Doctors told patients about potential adverse events of a new medication only 35% of the time.

To be fair this was a study based on data collected from 185 outpatient visits to 44 physicians, so draw your own "margin of error" conclusions.

(I wonder how are they going to pin this one on the pharmaceutical industry?)

Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.

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