Sunday, March 29, 2009

Over Prescribed, Record Broken

I have a running record that you don't want to break. Previous record was a person on 26 different daily medications, which I thought was outrageous. Then it happened at the Diabetes Expo in Portland, Oregon. A woman sat down and pulled out her list of medications. 33. She is on 33 medications a day. I looked at her, looked at the list, looked at her symptoms she had checked off a list of stress survey, and wanted to scream. Modern medicine is failing her. This can't be what we are hoping Americans have access to. I am hoping patients can explore their options and try Chinese medicine, acupuncture, and naturopathic medicine as they might be able to help at the very least reduce the amount of medication they are on, at best help them correct the underlying imbalance and thrive.

An analysis of 2.4 million insured adults over 65 years old in 2004 showed the average senior seeing two or more doctors filled 27 prescriptions a year and were at risk for 10 potential drug errors. Both of these numbers increased with the number of doctors a person saw. Add to this the 106,000 + adverse drug reactions per year (1966-1996 study) that lead to death (which puts iatrogenic/ doctor caused deaths the fourth-sixth leading cause of death) and we have a problem. This is not healthcare. This is disease management. I find it curious in the current debate there is no definition of health and wellness. There is only talk of the system, insurance, and access. We have a unique opportunity to address the system. I'd like to advocate for more wellness and alternatives to the current drug madness, access for all Americans to true person centered healthcare, where they could access a variety of providers if they choose.


Anonymous said...

When I started seeing Dr. Nigh I was on nearly a dozen daily medicines. I am now on one or two and the only other things I take are supplements like vitamins, oils or herbs.

His acupuncture treatments also cured my chronic sinusitis.

Thank you Dr. Nigh! It is possible for your body to get back into sync with itself and nature.

Anonymous said...

For over 20 years as a nurse I have been trying to persuade family, friends, and cliets of our low-cost healthfairs to stop with the drugs and follow a more beneficial life style/supplement routine. But the bottom line usually becomes "insurance pays for the drugs but not the supplements", some of which can be rather pricey.

Anonymous said...

I am a surgical oncology nurse and our current system really does need to be addressed. If only all health and wellness modalities were integrated and available to everyone. Medicine has its place but it is being used as a crutch. We need to learn to live without all the chemicals. Thank you for posting educational information for all of us to learn from. Hopefully someday my role as a nurse will become much different.

susan said...

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