The consequences of failure to understand medications are dire.
Prescriptions – patients must have a thorough understanding of their prescriptions during their hospital stay and when preparing for discharge in order to achieve their best recovery. According to the National Institutes of Health, “Seventy-five percent of Americans have trouble taking their medicine as directed. This lack of adherence is costing many people their good health and the healthcare system billions of dollars. Estimates are that approximately 125,000 deaths per year in the United States are due to medication non-adherence and that 33% to 69% of medication-related hospital admissions are due to poor adherence. The total cost estimates for medication non-adherence range from $100 billion to $300 billion every year, when both direct and indirect costs are included.”(1) Those are staggering figures. The consequences of a patient not understanding how or when to take their medications include:
- Unnecessary visits to the doctor or emergency room for the patient, and can result in crisis events or fatality.
- Increased costs for the healthcare facility, in terms of labor, resources and supplies.
- Loss of reimbursements and penalties.
Prescriptions: Education and Fulfillment
These extraordinary costs can be prevented with a systematic, planned approach to medication education and options for providers to offer patients in-hospital pharmacy fulfillment of their prescriptions. Education is a key component, and HCI offers a vast array of patient education in the form of digital video content through MediaCare, assigned through our Interactive Whiteboards and pushed or viewed at the patient’s leisure on their in-room television. Digital learning has a much higher rate of comprehension than costly printed materials which can be lost or forgotten. Education assignment can be made based upon diagnosis at Admittance, and gives Care Teams the opportunity to reinforce the value and importance of the content throughout the patient’s stay. Factor in the elimination of printed educational handout costs: ink, toner, cartridges, printer maintenance contacts and a place to store it all – and there is significant savings in a digital educational library of medications for patients.
HCI offers an option for patients to search for and learn about their medications through the Rx App; an app which runs on the patient’s Interactive Whiteboard and in-room television and and allows them to:
- Ask for prescriptions fulfillment right from the hospital pharmacy prior to discharge.
- Read a full description of their medicines, including side effects and warnings.
- View images and pictures of the medicines they’ve been prescribed.
MediaCare, the HCI enterprise-wide, integrated platform for Interactive Patient Care, drives our patient-centered apps like the Rx App and Pharmacy Fulfillment App as a comprehensive interface to support streamlined work-flows and patient education to reduce errors and readmissions.
Request your brief online or in-person demo and discover how the Interactive Patient Care system from HCI can transform the way you deliver care and keep patients safe.
- Benjamin, Regina M. “Medication adherence: helping patients take their medicines as directed.” Public health reports (Washington, D.C. : 1974) vol. 127,1 (2012): 2-3. doi:10.1177/003335491212700102