The AP (1/4, Johnson) reports, “Patients not taking medicine as prescribed cost the US healthcare system roughly $290 billion a year in extra treatment and related costs, research shows. One study estimated those patients pay about $2,000 a year in extra out-of-pocket medical costs.” Notably, “nearly three in four Americans don’t take their prescription medicine as directed. Even among those with serious chronic health conditions such as diabetes, about one in three don’t.”
Unfortunately, “for patients with chronic health conditions — nearly half the US population — not taking medications as prescribed can bring serious consequences,” even premature death.
— “Following the doctor’s orders on your medicine can save you thousands, prevent hospital stays,” Linda A. Johnson, Chicago Tribune, January 3, 2011.