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New guidelines help patients stick to medication therapies

The Case Management Society of America (CMSA) released CMAG-1, Case Management Adherence Guidelines, which aim to improve patient adherence to the medication therapies created by their providers. The CMSA cites studies that indicate nonadherence claims almost 125,000 lives a year (due to cardiovascular disease alone), and adds a $100 billion burden to the health care system.


Fast stats

CMSA released the following statistics:


[white diamond suit] According to an American Heart Association study, initially, 12% of patients fail to fill their prescriptions. Another 12% fill the prescription, but don't take the medications. Of those who take their medication, 29% stop taking it before completing their course of therapy.


[white diamond suit] According to additional studies, nonadherence causes 10% of all hospital admissions and 23% to 40% of all nursing home admissions.


[white diamond suit] Studies show HIV-infected patients exhibit particular risk for nonadherence: 95% adherence achieves an 80% probability of sustained viral suppression; adherence below 95% drops suppression to 5%.


[white diamond suit] A retrospective analysis of 48,000 schizophrenic patients treated at a Veterans Affairs medical center shows that nonadherent patients had a 2.4-fold increase in hospital admissions.



Source: "Case Management Society of America Launches New Guidelines to Improve Patient-Provider Relationships, Adherence to Therapies," June 22, 2004, press release.