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Cardinal tool kit warns seniors of Rx misuse
October 19th, 2011
DUBLIN, Ohio – The Cardinal Health Foundation and the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy are releasing a new, interactive tool kit designed to educate senior citizens about how to avoid misuse of prescription drugs.
The new release is the latest version of the foundation and pharmacy school's GenerationRx tool kit, aimed at raising awareness of the dangers of prescription drug abuse. Previous versions of Generation Rx were tailored for adults and teens.
Also on Wednesday, Cardinal and the pharmacy colloege announced a new partnership with the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP) to promote the tool kit among older adults and their caregivers.
The new Generation Rx kit is intended to help individuals avoid medication-related problems or adverse drug events so they can get the best results from their medications, according to Cardinal. The kit for seniors focuses on misuse, whereas the earlier versions targeted Rx abuse.
"Prescription medications are among the most common types of medical treatment in the United States, with pharmacists dispensing almost 4 billion prescriptions each year," Jessica Lineberger, senior manager of community relations for Cardinal Health, said in a statement. "These medications are helping us live longer and healthier lives, but if they're not taken appropriately, they have dangerous and deadly consequences, particularly for individuals who take multiple medications."
The Generation Rx Senior/Best Use of Medications tool kit, available for download free at CardinalHealth.com/GenerationRx, provides all the resources for pharmacists, health care providers, community organizations and others to conduct an educational session at a senior center, library, independent living home or other location where a group of older adults or caregivers gather, Cardinal said. The kit features discussion-based and interactive materials — including a PowerPoint presentation, "Rx Roulette" game and role play activities — that can be used to customize a 30- to 60-minute presentation to educate older adults and their caregivers about the safe use of medications. It also offers simple steps and suggestions for avoiding adverse drug events.
"We believe that once armed with this valuable information, individuals will be more empowered to take the right steps to ensure they're using their medications in a way that will improve their health while at the same time avoiding medication-related problems," stated Ruth Emptage, clinical assistant professor of pharmacy practice at the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. "And we're very pleased to have ASCP as a partner to help us reach older adults, as we believe they're one of audiences most likely to benefit from this tool kit."
Plans call for ASCP to introduce the Generation Rx Senior/Best Use of Medications tool kit at its annual meeting next month and at upcoming meetings hosted by the American Society on Aging and the National Areas Agencies on Aging .
"We know that older adults are 2.5 times more likely to experience an adverse drug event than younger individuals and seven times more likely to be hospitalized for an adverse drug event than younger individuals," commented Janice Feinberg, research director at the ASCP Foundation. "But researchers estimate that about one-third of all medication-related problems in older adults are preventable, and that's why we're so pleased to partner with the Cardinal Health Foundation and the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy to help raise awareness among older adults about how to avoid the misuse of prescription drugs."