Many medicaid patients skip drugs that could prevent heart trouble

Many medicaid patients skip drugs that could prevent heart trouble
Simple measures can keep patients on track, researchers say.

(HealthDay) -- Many Medicaid recipients with chronic health conditions that can lead to heart disease -- diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol -- do not take their prescribed medications, a new study has found.

The researchers said failure to take medications leads to higher costs of care and an increased risk of hospitalization and even death.

They looked at 2008 and 2009 data from more than 150,000 in New York City, aged 20 to 64, and found that only 63 percent of those with the three chronic conditions took their prescribed medications. Older patients and white and were most likely to take their medications, while black and Hispanic patients were least likely.

"The outcome of this study is concerning, as it shows a large number of people with chronic conditions that lead to cardiovascular disease aren't taking prescribed medications, which could prevent a potential stroke or heart attack," lead author Dr. Kelly Kyanko, an instructor in the department of population health at the NYU Langone Medical Center, said in a center news release.

"We hope these findings will help local in the New York City area address this problem by creating programs to increase adherence rates, specifically in patient populations most at risk," Kyanko added.

The study was published online recently in the Journal of Urban Health.

"We believe that patients and their doctors can work to improve through simple measures such as switching to once-a-day or combination pills, keeping a pill box and obtaining 90-day refills instead of 30-day refills for medications they take on a regular basis," Kyanko said.

High-risk patients may require more intensive interventions, such as working with a nurse or pharmacist to ensure they take their , she added.

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death both in New York and in the United States, according to the release.

More information: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention outlines ways to prevent heart disease.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Take your blood pressure meds before bed

Oct 24, 2011

It's better to take blood pressure-lowering medications before bed rather than first thing in the morning, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology (JASN). The results i ...

Recommended for you

Adrenal sex hormone level may predict heart disease risk

21 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Blood levels of the adrenal sex hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and its sulfate (DHEA-S) may predict an increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) in elderly men, according to a study ...

Researchers aim to simplify life saving drug

Oct 29, 2014

Heparin, the life saving blood thinner used in major surgeries and treatment of heart diseases, is a complicated drug but a research team from the University of British Columbia has set out to make its use a lot safer by ...

Frequent readmissions, high costs after cardiac arrest

Oct 29, 2014

(HealthDay)—Frequent readmissions and high inpatient costs are seen among older survivors of in-hospital cardiac arrest, according to a study published online Oct. 28 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality an ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.