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WASHINGTON — Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., argued before the Senate Thursday around the value that increased access to medication therapy management can deliver to overall health care — that includes cutting into the $290 billion in annual costs associated with medication nonadherence and preventing as many as 89,000 premature deaths.
“With as much as one-half of all patients [in the United States] not following doctor’s orders regarding their medications, medication therapy management could help reduce some of the wasted healthcare costs in our system,” Hagan said.
Pointing to the well-known Asheville Project, Hagan noted that medical costs have decreased among patients participating in that program by between $1,600 and $3,300 per year. In addition, there are 50% fewer sick days taken by participants, which translates into increased productivity gains of some $18,000 annually.
“The bill I am reintroducing today takes MTM one step further,” Hagan said. “Specifically, [the Medication Therapy Management Empowerment Act of 2011] would expand MTM eligibility to seniors with any chronic condition that accounts for high spending in our healthcare system, such as heart failure and diabetes.” Hagan concluded, “Expansion of MTM to more seniors will no doubt improve their overall health, while at the same time reducing waste in our healthcare system.”