Initial assessment of the benefits of implementing pharmacogenetics into the medical management of patients in a long-term care facility

Health care costs associated with prescription drugs are enormous, particularly in patients with polypharmacy (taking more than five prescription medications), and the costs continue to grow annually. Authors claim [reference below] that evolution of pharmacogenetics has provided clinicians with a valuable tool that allows for a smarter, more fine-tuned approach to treating patients for a number of clinical conditions.

Authors state that “applying a pharmacogenetics approach to the medical management of patients can provide a significant improvement to their care, and can result in cost savings by reducing the use of ineffective drugs, and decrease overall health care utilization”. The Big Pharma company AltheaDx has begun a study to look at the benefits associated with incorporating pharmacogenetics into the medical management of patients who are on five or more medications. Authors claim that applying pharmacogenetics-guided PharmD recommendations across this patient population resulted in the elimination and/or replacement of one to three drugs––for about half of the polypharmacy patient population tested, and an estimated US$621 in annual savings per patient. The initial assessment of this study shows that there is a clear opportunity for concrete health care savings solely from prescription 

Pharmacogenom Pers Med 19 Jan 2016; 9: 1—6

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