Skip to main content

Advanced Search

Advanced Search

Current Filters

Filter your query

Publication Types



Newsletter Article


Many Seniors Don't Talk to Docs About Their Medications

An alarmingly high number of elderly Americans are not telling their physician about problems they are having with prescription medications, including unwelcome side effects, affordability, or perceived efficacy, according to a recent study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Conducted by researchers at Tufts–New England Medical Center, The Commonwealth Fund, and the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, the study found a wide communication gap between physicians and elderly patients. One-third of all seniors surveyed for the study had not talked to their doctors about all of their medicines in the past 12 months. Overall, 40 percent of seniors reported not adhering to doctor's orders regarding their medication regimens, with nonadherence even greater among seniors who reported three or more chronic conditions. Also disturbing: more than a quarter of those who skipped doses, stopped taking a drug because of side effects, or felt they did not need the drug failed to inform their doctor.

IMPORTED: www_commonwealthfund_org__usr_img_inothernews_patient.gif


Patients who did discuss the cost of their prescribed drugs with their physicians were more likely to be switched to lower-cost alternatives. This finding, the authors say, "suggests such discussions are worth having."

Publication Details