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Last Updated
October 27, 2014
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October 27, 2014
Prescriptions Never Picked Up At Pharmacy: Reducing Primary Medication Nonadherence
“Ready for Pick Up: Reducing Primary Medication
Non-Adherence – A New Prescription for Health Care Improvement,” outlines the problem of
prescriptions for newly-initiated therapy that are not picked up for the first time and, thus,
never taken, leading to the possibility of worse health and increased stress on the health care
system. The rate of primary non-adherence (PMN), that is, the percentage of first-time
prescriptions abandoned by patients (and thus not picked up at pharmacies), can range as high as 30
percent among some classes of medication, according to recent research. 

A May 2014 working group convened by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS)
Foundation, the Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA), and NEHI framed the issues outlined in the paper.
The paper addresses key issues in the adoption and utilization of a new pharmacy quality metric on
primary medication non-adherence endorsed by the Pharmacy Quality Alliance in November 2013.  Prior
to the advent of e-prescribing, tracking PMN rates was not feasible.  Current adherence policy
focuses on patients who have received their therapies at least once – because these patients
trigger payment claims processing that allows medication adherence to be tracked.

The report makes eight recommendations that stakeholders, from physicians and pharmacists to
insurers and health plans, could do to understand and attack the problem, including pharmacist
interventions with non-adherent patients.
High on the list: more dialogue among health care payers, the physician community and the pharmacy
industry to establish common ground for action.

October 27, 2014
Webcast: Older Adults: Promoting Safe Medication Use & Storage
Date & Time:  Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014 | 12:30 – 1:30 PM EST  

Medicine safe storage education used to focus primarily on parents of babies and toddlers, but new
data shows that of the nearly 70,000 young children who visit the ER each year after getting in to
medicines left within reach, approximately 38% of the time, that medicine belonged to a
grandparent.   This webcast will focus on medicine storage education specifically for seniors and
the communities who serve them. The webcast aims to inform and engage collaborators and
stakeholders in the senior health/aging space around the issue of safe medicine storage and
disposal, both to keep young grandchildren safe from accidental medicine poisoning and abuse, and
to protect curious teens from accessible medicines that can be abused. Tips for medicine adherence
will also be addressed.
WEBCAST SPEAKERS:  Sue Peschin, President & CEO, Alliance for Aging Research;  Dan Budnitz, MD,
MPH, CDC Medication Safety Program, Up And Away Campaign; Kate Carr, President & CEO, Safe Kids
Worldwide;  Stephen Pasierb, President & CEO, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids;  Marcia Lee Taylor,
Senior Vice President, Director of Government Affairs, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids;  Emily Skor,
Executive Director, CHPA Educational Foundation; Rebecca Burkholder, Vice President, Health Policy,
National Consumers League. 

October 23, 2014
Med-Check PASSPORT Toolkit
Keeping Patients and Healthcare Providers on the Same Page about Medications. 

Many individuals receive health care from a variety of access points throughout the community; they
may have one or more chronic conditions and have medicines prescribed by different health care
providers; some may even get their medicines from different sources.   To help patients keep track
of their medications and to keep providers on the same page about all the medicines a patient may
be taking,  the Schools of Pharmacy in Maryland (University of Maryland , Baltimore; University of
Maryland Eastern Shore, and Notre Dame of Maryland University) in collaboration with the Primary
Care Coalition and Delmarva Foundation have developed the Med-Check Passport Toolkit & Guide (v.1.]
 -- a medication reconciliation form with accompanying educational and training  videos designed to
help ensure patients and all of their providers have an up to date record of all the medicines a
person may take.  (The Med-Check PASSPORT Toolkit was developed with funding from the Delmarva
Foundation, under contract with CMS.  The contents presented do not necessarily reflect CMS policy

October 22, 2014
Young Children at Risk from Wrong Medicine Doses
Every year, an average of 63,358 medication errors occur in children younger than age 6, and 25% of
those errors are in infants, younger than 12 months old—that comes down to a child in the United
States being given the wrong medicine or wrong dose every eight minutes, according to a new study
in the journal Pediatrics.  More than 200,000 out-of-hospital medication errors are reported to
U.S. poison control centers annually, and approximately 30% of these cases involve children under 6
years of age.   These mistakes occur outside of the hospital, doctor’s office or clinic and
typically involve liquid medications (81.9%). The most common error was incorrect dosing: giving
the wrong dose (17.8%); giving the correct dose, but inadvertently giving it twice (27%); or
confusing the units of measure (8.2%), according to the study. Giving or taking the wrong
medication was seen in 7.8% of cases. Researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Central Ohio
Poison Center and The Ohio State University College of Medicine, all in Columbus, OH reviewed data
from the National Poison Database System and looked at medication errors that occurred in the
community from 2002 through 2012 among children younger than age 6 years.   

Related from NCPIE – see Be MedWise

October 20, 2014
Mark your calendar: Get Smart About Antibiotics Week – Nov. 17-23, 2014
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Get Smart: Know When Antibiotics Work and
Get Smart for Healthcare programs invite your organization to join them this year in making Get
Smart About Antibiotics Week 2014 (Get Smart Week) a success.  Recent reports by both the World
Health Organization and CDC acknowledge that antimicrobial resistance is now a major global threat
and efforts to address this growing crisis are urgently needed.  Tools and resource examples
available on the Get Smart Week website to assist you in doing the following:
•	Educating consumers and patients about appropriate use of antibiotics and relieving symptoms;
•	Supporting appropriate prescribing by healthcare professionals; and
•	Engaging media to cover the issue of antibiotic resistance.
Partner organizations are encouraged to confirm their participation by Friday, November 7, to
ensure inclusion on the Get Smart website by November 14.