Approximately 50% of people that are prescribed medication by their doctor, do not take their medications, and 20-30% of new prescriptions are never filled at the pharmacy. Some people do not understand the consequences of these actions on their health. The obvious consequence is the worsening of one’s illness, and in the case of chronic illnesses, could lead to hospitalization or death. The estimated chronic disease treatment failure due to non-adherence is 20-30%, and has caused 125,000 deaths in the U.S. Missing doses or taking the wrong dose can lead to withdrawal or overdose symptoms for some medications.
Your physician decided that taking these prescribed medications would be of great benefit for your health. The importance includes controlling chronic illnesses, treating temporary illnesses or infections, and improving overall health and wellbeing. Some helpful tips for remembering to take your medications include: taking them at the same time every day, including them in your daily routine, and keeping a calendar.
Here at the Healthy Lifestyle Center, you can schedule a medical education consult to discuss any questions you may have about the medications you take. Alongside taking medications, almost all chronic illnesses are improved by living a healthy lifestyle. The Healthy Lifestyle Center can also provide support in learning about eating healthy and getting regular physical activity.
Brown MT, Bussell JK. Medication adherence: WHO cares? Mayo Clin Proc. 2011;86(4):304– 314. doi:10.4065/mcp.2010.0575
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Why You Need to Take Your Medications as Prescribed or Instructed. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/special-features/why-you-need-take-your-medications- prescribed-or-instructed. Accessed June 26, 2019.