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Title: Why is polypharmacy increasing in aged care facilities? The views of Australian health care professionals
Austin Authors: Jokanovic, Natali;Tan, Edwin CK;Dooley, Michael J;Kirkpatrick, Carl M;Elliott, Rohan A ;Bell, J Simon
Affiliation: Department of Pharmacy, Austin Health, Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia
Centre for Medicine Use and Safety, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Pharmacy Department, Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: Oct-2016
Date: 2016-01-25
Publication information: Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 2016; 22(5): 677-682
Abstract: RATIONALE, AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: The prevalence of polypharmacy in residential aged care facilities (RACFs) is high and increasing. Although not necessarily inappropriate, polypharmacy has been associated with drug interactions, adverse drug events, geriatric syndromes and hospital admissions. The aim of this study was to identify and prioritize factors contributing to the increasing prevalence of polypharmacy in RACFs. METHODS: Seventeen health care professionals from metropolitan and regional Victoria and South Australia identified and prioritized factors using a modified nominal group technique. RESULTS: The top five factors ranked from most important to fifth most important were 'changes in resident mix', 'increasing numbers of prescribers and the reluctance of one prescriber to discontinue a medicine commenced by another prescriber', 'better adherence to clinical practice guidelines', 'increasing reliance on locums' and 'greater recognition and pharmacological management of pain'. CONCLUSIONS: Reasons for the increase in polypharmacy are multifactorial. Understanding the factors contributing to polypharmacy may help to guide future research and develop interventions to manage polypharmacy in RACFs.
DOI: 10.1111/jep.12514
Journal: Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice
PubMed URL:
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Aged
Homes for the aged
Long-term care
Nominal group technique
Nursing homes
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