Increasing Prescription Rates: A Case Study

714 Words 3 Pages
If the increasing prescription rates are determined to be a health concern to the country, then appropriate action must be taken, and the driving factors of the increase must identified in order to guide this response.
Advancements in Medicine. The most influential factor contributing to the increase is the rapid advancements occurring in the medical realm. In the past twenty years, there have been large enhancements to medical imaging technology, including computerized tomography (CAT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanning. These improved diagnostic equipment increase the probabilities of a chronic illness being detected; therefore physicians are diagnosing more patients with health conditions that warrant a prescription medicine (Caliendo et al., 2013). Dr. William Lang, the Vice President of policy and advocacy for the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, commented on the upsurges in prescriptions stating, "This is really not earth-shattering news. There 's an increasing number of people with chronic illnesses, and the primary management tool available for dealing with chronic illness is medication" (Thompson, 2014). Although the cause and effect relationship between medical innovations and diagnoses does predominantly explain the increase in prescribing, it does not clarify the source of
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The last influence to the prescribing rates discussed in this paper is doctor-shopping, the action in seeking to obtain controlled substances from multiple health care providers. Those participating in doctor-shopping, termed drug seekers, attempt to procure multiple prescriptions by visiting multiple doctors to receive treatment for the same illness. Medical professionals suspect there has been an increase in this illegal activity in recent years (Sansone & Sansone, 2012). This suspected increase is alarming considering that the majority of drug seekers have intent on abusing the extra prescriptions or selling them on the

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