Vaught was convicted Friday of a 2017 fatal drug error after a three-day trial that continues to capture the attention of nurses across the country, many of whom worry that the case could set a precedent of criminalizing medical errors. Vaught, scheduled to be sentenced May 13, faces three to six years in prison for neglect and one to two years for negligent homicide.
Since 2020, the healthcare industry has lost nearly half a million workers, exacerbating staffing shortages that existed prior to the start of the pandemic. One of the hardest-hit areas is the pharmacy. As of September 2021, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected there would be 43,000 pharmacist and pharmacy technician job openings each year throughout the next decade.
Clinical trials are expensive, take significant time, and can run into any number of challenges and delays. The average drug study will see a 30% patient dropout rate. What is needed, according to Virginia-based Jeeva Informatics, is more diverse patient enrollment, better engagement, and increased evidence generation.
Pharmacies need a streamlined clinical and operational option to integrate data and deliver actionable analytics in one place rather than across disparate sources. This is particularly important in infection prevention and antimicrobial stewardship programs, where providers need to identify indications, treatment options, resistance considerations, potential drug interactions, and pharmacology.
Medication non-adherence, particularly among senior patients, is a costly problem facing the American healthcare system. This issue results in an estimated $100 billion–$290 billion in annual costs, according to studies reviewed in the Annals of Internal Medicine (AIM). Other research cited by AIM indicates that 20%–30% of prescribed medications go unfilled by patients and approximately 50% of medications for chronic diseases aren’t used by patients as prescribed.
Healthcare organizations, whose staff are continuing to feel the stress of COVID-19, will need to double down on diversion prevention strategies in the coming months to avoid serious legal, financial, and clinical consequences, from massive monetary fines to the spread of healthcare-acquired infections such as hepatitis C.
ZS has shown, Albert Whangbo says, that many factors contribute to patients dropping off their therapy—it’s not just down to patients themselves, but also to providers, pharmacies, payers, and the patient’s environment.
According to a recent study by the Get the Medications Right Institute (GTMRx), nearly a quarter of the patients surveyed said their medical team did not regularly review their medications, despite a third of the respondents saying they were currently taking four or more medications.
On episode 33 of PSQH: The Podcast, Dr. Sirj Goswami, CEO and co-founder of InsightRX, talks about how precision medicine can help prevent adverse drug events.
Despite efforts to reduce adverse drug events and improve patient safety—including the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) in-depth undertaking to create policies, value-based purchasing programs, and other financial incentives aimed at preventing hospital ADEs—the problem perseveres. The result is an increase of about $136 billion in annual U.S. healthcare costs, much of which could be avoided.