Maintaining Meds May Help Medicare Patients With Mental Illnesses Avoid Hospitalization.

USA Today (2/20, Kennedy) reports, “Medicare consumers with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia are hospitalized less often if they maintain access to their medications when they hit the coverage gap for prescription drugs, according to a study” published Feb. 19 in the American Journal of Managed Care. The study of “87,747 patients with bipolar disorder and 92,523 with schizophrenia” revealed that “hospitalization rates…were highest for patients with no gap coverage.” The study authors argued that the US “would save money by closing the prescription drug ‘doughnut hole’ and by having more patients use generic instead of brand-name” medications.

Related Links:

— “Report: Mental health drugs vital for Medicare patients, “Kelly Kennedy, USA Today, February 19, 2013.

Posted in In The News.