Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Vancouver Study: 28% of Medication - Related ER Visits Caused by Non-adherence

In a study of 1,194 patients at Vancouver General Hospital, 68% of medication-related emergency room visits were preventable. The most common reasons for drug-related visits were adverse drug reactions (39.3%), nonadherence (27.9%) and use of the wrong or suboptimal drug (11.5%).

Top admissions distributed by drug class:
CNS agents (40.8%)
Cardiovascular agents (12.8%)
Antimicrobial agents (11.2%)

Authors recommend:
"Future research should focus on interventions to optimize communication between health care professionals in acute and ambulatory settings and to improve patients' adherence with prescribed medications."

"The optimal strategy may involve interventions outside the hospital to improve prescribing practices and monitoring, particularly among high-risk patients or patients taking high-risk medications"