Thursday, June 14, 2007

Hippocrates Started It All

Thanks to Dr. Showalter from AlignMap for reminding me of Hippocrates' quote: "Keep watch also on the faults of the patients which often make them lie about the taking of things prescribed.” Also Dr. C. Everett Koop's keen insight: "Drugs don't work in patients that don't take them." Which I regularly misquote.

Also from Dr. Showalter, some facts I did not know about the cost of noncompliance:
20% of unintentional pregnancies in the US are attributed to medication noncompliance which costs about $2.6 BILLION. I have known a few girls who forgot to take their pills and luckily there wasn't a problem, but can you believe that number? Just because they forgot? I can understand ignorance or trusting a guy for protection, but again, 20% of unwanted pregnancies could have been avoided by simply remembering to take a daily dose of Desigen!

3 times as many doctor visits & $2,000 per year in additional costs compared to patients who follow their treatment plan. Do you want to pay that extra nut in healthcare costs or Social Security or taxes for Medicare if 50% of Americans are noncompliant? See how this trickles down to $100 BILLION!

10-25% of hospital & nursing home admissions are due to noncompliance, resulting in 340 deaths per day. Could this be your grandmother? Mine went off her medications every couple of months in her final years because she did not like her side effects. This bounced her in and out of a nursing home and eventually led to her death. She was 88 years old at the time and she thought she deserved to do what she wanted to do. The doctors tried to keep her on her meds, but she was very stuborn.

I don't fault her, she had a great life but the last few years were tough as all her friends were dying off and she didn't want to stick around. BUT I will not accept my father or mother going off their diabetes medication or heart medication or cholesterol pills just because they don't like what happens to them. Or support their trip to the hospital because they forgot to take their hypertention medication.

So to wrap things up, as parents, children, godparents, grandparents and care givers alike, heed Hippocrates, the father of it all.

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