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What percentage of Americans used multiple prescription drugs in the past month and how did this vary by age?
Over the last 10 years, the percentage of Americans who took at least one prescription drug in the past month increased from 44% to 48%. In 2007-2008, 1 out of every 5 children and 9 out of 10 older Americans reported using at least one prescription drug in the past month.
Those who were without a regular place for health care, health insurance, or prescription drug benefit had less prescription drug use compared with those who had these benefits. The most commonly used types of drugs included: asthma medicines for children, central nervous system stimulants for adolescents, antidepressants for middle-aged adults, and cholesterol lowering drugs for older Americans. In the United States, spending for prescription drugs was $234.1 billion in 2008, which was more than double what was spent in 1999 (1). Prescription drug use in the United States increased from 1999-2000 through 2007-2008 (Figure 1).
The percentage of Americans who used at least one prescription drug in the past month increased from 44% in 1999-2000 to 48% in 2007-2008. The percentage of persons who used two or more prescription drugs increased from 25% in 1999-2000 to 31% in 2007-2008. The percentage of persons who used five or more prescription drugs increased from 6% in 1999-2000 to 11% in 2007-2008.
Among children (under age 12), less than 10% used two or more prescription drugs in the past month and only 1% used five or more. Among older Americans (aged 60 and over), more than 76% used two or more prescription drugs and 37% used five or more. There were differences in prescription drug use by age, sex, and race and ethnicity (Figure 3). The non-Hispanic white population had the highest prescription drug use and the Mexican-American population had the lowest. Having a regular source of health care, health insurance, and health insurance with prescription drug benefits were all associated with increased use of prescribed medicines (Figure 4). Persons with a regular place for health care were 2.7 times as likely to have used prescription drugs in the past month as those without a regular place for health care.
Those with health insurance were almost twice as likely to have used at least one prescription drug in the past month as those without health insurance coverage. Among people with health insurance, those having a prescription drug benefit were 22% more likely to use prescription drugs than those who did not have this benefit.
Among children under age 6, penicillin antibiotics were the most frequently used prescription drugs. Diuretics and I?-blockers were also very commonly used drugs in adults and older Americans. Over the last decade the percentage of Americans who took at least one prescription drug in the past month increased by 10%. The types of prescription drugs that were most commonly used were asthma medicines for children, central nervous system stimulants for adolescents, antidepressants for middle-aged adults, and cholesterol lowering and high blood pressure drugs for older Americans. Those without a regular place for health care, health insurance, or prescription drug benefits had lower prescription drug use rates. Finally, almost 40% of older Americans used five or more prescription drugs in the past month.
Prescription drug use: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) participants were asked if they had taken a prescription drug in the past month. Therapeutic drug class (type of drugs): Prescription drugs were classified based on the three-level nested therapeutic classification scheme of Cerner Multuma€™s Lexicon. National Cholesterol Education Program expert panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III). All material appearing in this report is in the public domain and may be reproduced or copied without permission; citation as to source, however, is appreciated. ConnectWe believe that we can use this blog to keep you up-to-date with news, legislation and top tips on everything to do with background screening, drug testing and pre-employment background checks. For more information on the blog or what we can do for you, get in touch and we will do everything we can to help!
Starting July 1, Oregon residents that are over age 21 will be able to legally use marijuana recreationally. Until July, all marijuana use including medical marijuana is illegal in the state, but once the new law becomes active, employers will still not be required to update their drug policies. This subject was brought up in a 2010 Oregon Supreme Court case (Emerald Steel Fabricators v. Those who are employed by the federal government and those who work under federal contracts are, and will continue to be, governed under zero-tolerance drug policies mandated by the government, since federal law does not recognize pot legality regardless of the state’s stance. As states consider passing laws that allow for legal marijuana usage — and in the few states in which pot is already legal — some confusion may crop up for employers. 2)   Make sure your policies are in writing, are filed with your human resources department, and are available to employees. 4)   If you update your policies, make sure your employees know what changes have been made. When employers conduct pre-employment drug tests or enforce random drug testing, they typically have to hire a drug testing service or work with a local clinic to get results. Scanadu has introduced a device that may change not only the healthcare industry, but also how employers conduct drug tests. While the Scanaflo is currently only being marketed toward those who want or need to regularly monitor their health at home — such as pregnant women and the elderly — Scanadu co-founder Sam De Brouwer has noted that there may be opportunities for this device to be used for drug testing in the future. Should a drug testing service choose to use this device as part of its service, the person conducting the tests would use his or her phone to scan the used strips. While organizations may see this as an opportunity to conduct urine tests on their own instead of hiring a drug testing service for screening, businesses should take caution. This technology has not yet been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but Scanadu is hopeful that it will get the proper certifications from the FDA by the end of the year.
Drugs in the workplace: Are confessing to using drugs and testing positive for drugs two different things? Under Minnesota’s Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act (DATWA), having an employee confess to using drugs prior to completing a drug test does not have the same employment consequences as that same person actually having a urine drug test turn up positive. This was recently brought up in court after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson told a drug-testing company employee that he “smoked a little weed” prior to completing a drug test, which was required as part of his bond after he was arrested in Texas. According to the National Law Review, people who are required to take drug tests — either randomly for a job or as a condition for some prior arrest — often confess to doing drugs before they even complete testing.
DATWA makes no exceptions for confessions on company property; the employer may immediately terminate an employee that admits to using illegal substances, if that is consistent with company policy.
However, if a Minnesota employee’s drug test comes back positive for the first time, the employer may not fire its employee, and instead must allow the employee to go through a rehab or treatment program. Employers should be aware of state laws when it comes to drug testing employees and what they are legally bound to do if drug tests come back positive. The National Law Review encourages employers to proceed with drug testing as usual regardless of whether an employee has confessed to drug usage prior to testing. Recently, the Georgia Council on Alcohol and Drugs hosted an event called “Drugs Don’t Work” in an attempt to discourage illegal drug usage in the workplace, particularly because 70 percent of the state’s illegal drug users can be found among its employed. The Council is now providing incentives for businesses that implement drug-testing policies, as well as discouraging substance abuse by requiring that drug tests turn up clean in order for employees to maintain their jobs. If Georgia businesses implement drug-testing policies — as well as programs educating and training employees about drug use and abuse, and counseling referral programs — they may be certified by the Council to receive a 7.5 percent discount on their Worker’s Compensation insurance.
This discount would be beneficial in more than one way; employers would not only pay less for the insurance, but by implementing education programs, they have a smaller chance of actually having to pay out Worker’s Compensation, as it is likely that sober employees, and those around them, would be at less risk for workplace accidents.
According to the Council, there is no one particular occupation or demographic that is most highly affected by drug use in the workforce, and that drug abuse can happen in any job. Good news for employers: a study conducted by Quest Diagnostics has shown that illegal drug usage has decreased among employees over the past several years.
Drug-testing laboratory Quest Diagnostics has been reviewing urine tests that were collected over the past 26 years. Meanwhile, prescription amphetamine, opiate and painkiller use has increased since 2002, with Vicodin’s usage increasing a whopping 172 percent, and other prescription usage increasing by 70 to 100 percent. Of course, even if an employee is using a prescription legally, such as taking prescribed painkillers after a work accident, the presence of the drug in the employee’s bloodstream can still affect their ability to perform their jobs. The drug-testing waters are even muddier now that some states, such as Colorado, have legalized marijuana for recreational use.
Job candidates subject to pre-employment drug screening tested positive for illicit drugs at a greater rate in the first six months of 2012 than in all of 2011, according to Drug Testing Index(TM) (DTI) data released via a press release earlier this week by Quest Diagnostics.
It means that, with workforce drug use on the rise, employers need to be ever more focused on drug testing in the workplace. Get in touch with a professional drug testing company to ensure that your employees are adhering to law and company policy. Legislators in Montana heard a bill last week that would expand drug and alcohol testing to all working people in the state.
Many question the fairness in employment drug testing, and they have a fair argument to hear. More than six percent of the population over 12 years of age (13.9 million people) has used drugs within the past thirty days.
Seventy-three percent of all current drug users aged 18 and older (8.3 million adults) are employed. According to a national survey conducted by the Hazelden Foundation, more than sixty percent of adults know people who have gone to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Alcoholism costs 500 million lost work days each year, while alcohol and drug abuse cost the economy hundreds of millions of dollars a year. If you’re considering implementing a drug screening policy but looking for more information first, get in touch to find out how to ensure your business is protected from drug and alcohol abuse.

To help businesses understand the legalities, Mountain State Employers Council has developed a guideline for employers to help them develop policies about Amendment 64, something local Chamber of Commerce leaders say will be helpful for employers. An employer, whose supervisors are trained in reasonable suspicion of drug use and who require an employee to undergo a urinalysis, saliva or blood test after documenting signs and symptoms of drug use, will have a stronger chance of surviving a legal challenge if the employer terminates that employee.
Colorado’s legal off-duty activities law (CLODA) prohibits employers from terminating employees for legal, off-duty conduct.
If a worker is in a safety-sensitive occupation, employers may have a stronger legal basis to terminate employees who test positive for marijuana. If you have any additional questions regarding drug testing employees, whether in Colorado or another state, contact us for assistance.
Highly addictive painkillers have become a serious problem for injured employees seeking to file workers’ compensation claims, according to a new report from the Massachusetts-based Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI). Researchers found that almost one in 12 injured workers who begin using opioids were still using the prescription drugs three to six months later. Staying on top of such news and implementing drug testing among employees will go a long way to ensuring you maintain a safe and productive work environment.
The above chart exemplifies this rapid increase just in the span of 4 years in the United States. A major turning point in getting many parents to recognize the possible overprescription of stimulants occurred in 1970. This cartoon suggests amphetamines (Adderall or Ritalin) are just as dangerous as methamphetamines. In recent years, Adderall, Ritalin, and Concerta have become increasingly popular among young adults in assisting them with their school work. A hair loss cure on the market has a unique side effect, in that it can cause "gynecomastia". Unless you are planning to kill yourself with pills overdose, the least thing you would expect from a medicine to cause you is death.
Testosterone replacement therapy is used in patients who suffer from low testosterone levels. One drug on the market, EvaMist -- a treatment for menopause symptoms such as hot flashes -- has possible side effects that include cancer, stroke, heart attack, blood clots, and dementia!
You might expect to see or hear something that isn't actually there if you were taking an illegal drug like LSD or even a heavy painkiller like morphine. Have you ever swallowed a pill and been left with a nasty taste in your mouth, especially if you didn't drink water immediately afterward?
PLAVIX is proven to help protect against future heart attack or stroke by helping keep platelets in the blood from sticking together and forming clots. If you are diabetic and are taking Avandia to control your blood sugar, don't forget to play safe sex. WRITER'S NOTE:This is not a scientific article, if you are taking any of these drugs or have any doubts about it, please contact your doctor!
Dietary supplements could alter the way medication works, regardless of whether it is prescription or over-the-counter medicine.
Certain dietary supplements may change absorption, metabolism, or excretion of a medication and therefore affect its potency. Also, warfarin (a prescription blood thinner), ginkgo biloba (an herbal supplement), aspirin and vitamin E can each thin the blood, so taking any of these products together may increase the potential for internal bleeding or stroke. Dietary supplements are widely used and include vitamins, minerals, and other less familiar substancesa€”such as herbals, botanicals, amino acids, and enzymes. The panel also stated that there is no evidence that they do harm, either, with the possible exception of beta carotene and Vitamin E, which may do more harm than good. Rather than relying on supplements for health, the panel recommended people focus on eating a well-balanced diet instead.
The panel cited a lack of evidence for not being able to recommend taking supplements to prevent heart disease and cancer, but it also noted that it didn’t have enough data to advise against taking the majority of supplements, either. However, the experts advised that people not use beta carotene and Vitamin EA supplements for the prevention of heart disease or cancer because Vitamin E supplements were found to have no disease-fighting benefit and beta carotene could actually be harmful, since it appears to boost the risk ofA lung cancerA in people already at greater risk for this disease.
The Council for Responsible Nutrition, which represents the vitamin supplement industry, released a statement saying that despite the panel’s recommendations, it still believes taking a multivitamin is beneficial for people who may be experiencing nutritional gaps in their diet.
Overthecounter nerve pain treatments webmd, Learn more from webmd about nonprescription and over-the-counter treatments that drugs might help with mild or occasional pain, knee pain; therapy at. Over-the-counter nerve pain treatments - webmd - Learn more from webmd about nonprescription and over-the-counter treatments that drugs might help with mild or occasional pain, knee pain; therapy at. What over-the-counter (otc) medications treat muscular - What over-the-counter (otc) medications treat muscular what over-the-counter (otc) medications treat muscular neck over-the-counter pain medication or. Copyright © 2014 Special Gift, All trademarks are the property of the respective trademark owners. As new drugs are introduced and new uses for old drugs are found, more patients can have improved health and quality of life with the appropriate use of prescription drugs.
The use of multiple prescription drugs increased by 20% and the use of five or more drugs increased by 70%. These patterns reflect the main chronic diseases common at these ages, but may also likely reflect more aggressive treatments for chronic medical conditions such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure as recommended in the updated clinical guidelines (2,3). Lack of access to medicines may impact health and quality of life, as prescription drugs are essential to treat acute and chronic diseases.
This likely reflects the need to treat the many diseases that commonly occur in this age group; however, excessive prescribing or polypharmacy is also an acknowledged safety risk for older Americans, and a continuing challenge that may contribute to adverse drug events, medication compliance issues, and increased health care costs (4-6).
Those who answered a€?yesa€? were asked to show the interviewer the medication containers of all prescription drugs. NHANES is designed to monitor the health and nutritional status of the civilian noninstitutionalized U.S. Third report of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) expert panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III) final report. Seventh report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure.
Use of prescription and over-the-counter medications and dietary supplements among older adults in the United States. Analysis of the North Carolina long-term care polypharmacy initiative: A multiple-cohort approach using propensity-score matching for both evaluation and targeting.
In addition, Measure 91 will allow individuals to possess up to eight ounces of cannabis legally, carry one ounce publicly, and grow up to four cannabis plants at their home.
At some businesses, employees can expect no leniency when it comes to a failed drug test, even after the drug is declared legal and if the employee has a prescription. Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries), in which the court ruled that it is not disability discrimination to fire or refuse to hire someone that uses medical marijuana, because federal law bans the use of the drug. Other jobs that require employee sobriety, such as those in the transportation and manufacturing industries, may also require employees to continue to follow zero-tolerance policies. There may be questions like, if the state allows for legal usage of the drug, are you as an employer still allowed to enforce a no-tolerance drug policy? In fact, Colorado has formed a state Drug Oversight Committee to help answer questions such as these. Colorado still allows employers to enforce zero-tolerance drug policies, and does not require employers to accommodate those who use marijuana legally. Employees should know the rules of the company, what the policies are for drug testing (whether random, only after accidents, upon hiring, etc.) and what the consequences are if one fails a drug test. Some states have laws regarding zero-tolerance drug policies, and instead require employees who test positive for drugs to be offered a chance to enter a rehab program for a first infraction, rather than immediate termination. However, new technologies from healthcare company Scanadu may eventually make pre-employment drug testing as simple as checking your phone. The device, called Scanaflo, is a urinalysis test kit that utilizes an iPhone app to scan used strips. The phone app would immediately provide feedback regarding various chemical levels in the urine.
Drug testing laws vary state by state, and companies would be wise to continue working with these services in order to ensure they do not violate their employees’ rights or break any state or federal laws. Minnesota employers are allowed to respond differently to an admission of drug usage than to a positive drug test. In that situation, the employer is not responsible for ensuring the employee gets any treatment for a drug addiction.
Maine, Rhode Island and Vermont have similar laws to Minnesota’s DATWA, in that the first positive drug test is not grounds for termination; Iowa employers have a responsibility to the employee after the first positive alcohol test, but not after a positive drug test. The bad news is that, alternatively, there has been a rise in prescription drug usage, whether or not the drug has actually been prescribed to a particular patient. In addition to urine tests, labs are now able to test saliva and hair follicles, to reduce the chances of employees tampering with test substances.
While these prescriptions test positive on drug tests, it is not possible to tell just from the tests whether or not an employee is abusing the drug illegally, or if he or she has a valid prescription for the substance. Managers should be aware of their employees’ behavior, and make note of unusual activities, as some prescription drugs can cause dizziness, trouble operating motor vehicles, and other potentially dangerous behavior. Marijuana use still turns up on drug tests, and some occupations prohibit its use even in states where it is legal, for the safety of citizens or other workers. Ensure that if drug use continues to rise, it won’t be happening on your watch and in your domain. Bill sponsor, Republican Champ Edmunds of Missoula says the bill will help reduce workers compensation rates for employers. It just allows drug testing, the same way it does now and I think the end effect of this will be a reduction in workers comp. Several opponents spoke against the bill, saying it violates citizens’ constitutional rights. However, when considering the risks employers are putting themselves at without a drug testing policy, common sense certainly suggests it’s in their best interests.

A worker who is impaired through the use of marijuana in these occupations creates risk for the employer and other workers, which can fall under CLODA’s exceptions. Thus, pre-employment drug screening remains a lawful practice and may continue to be conducted by employers. However, the average cost increases to $117,000 when the prescription is for a long-term narcotic like OxyContin.
The claims represent injuries arising from October 1, 2006, to September 30, 2009, with prescriptions filled up to March 31, 2011.
In addition, 10 to 20% of workers who died on the job tested positive for alcohol or other drugs. Within only 10 years, this number rose to 150,000 children and many researchers issued a warning about Ritalin being overprescribed (LeFever et al., 2003).
Other countries prescribe no where near the amount we do in this country, but countries such as Germany and Japan see steady increases as well. The Washington Post published a story entitled “Omaha Pupils Given ‘Behavior Drugs.’” This article said that 5-10% of parents in the town of Omaha were coerced into giving their children this drug to control their behavior (Mays, 2006). Those who are not diagnosed with ADHD benefit from its effects and are able to perform better. This therapy can resolve the effects of hormonal imbalance, but not without the possibility of side effects. However, some of the most unlikely prescription drugs "may cause visual and auditory hallucinations" as one of their side effects and it's probably not the ones that you'd expect.
Besides the fact that this medication can cause or worsen heart failure, women taking Avandia should know that this medicine may increase the risk of pregnancy. Preventive Services Task Force have said that no evidence exists to say that supplements like vitamins or minerals taken either individually or in combination boost health in any way.
By 2007-2008, one-half of Americans used at least one or more prescription drugs; and 1 out of 10 used five or more.
For each drug reported, the interviewer recorded the producta€™s complete name from the container (7).
The most commonly cited second level of drug categorical codes were used in this analysis (7). Burt are with the Centers for Disease Control and Preventiona€™s National Center for Health Statistics, Division of Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys. Individuals who utilize the drug recreationally or medically during non-working hours can still fail a drug test at work, and in the state of Oregon, employees can be terminated for almost any reason, provided they are not protected by a union. It is expected that the state courts may see some challenges to that ruling over the coming years.
Do your employees have rights when it comes to using cannabis — or being under the influence — in the workplace? Here are some of the Committee’s recommendations, as well as items to consider for your particular state.
Employers may fire employees after a first failed drug test, even if the only thing the employee tests positive for is THC. Make sure your HR department keeps an eye on both your city and state legislative bodies, so you’ll understand the law as it applies to your business.
It’s not fair to employees to change the standards of the company without informing them that expectations have changed.
Lab workers must go back through tests and mark them as negative if the employee has a current prescription for the medication. Employers and courts will need to determine if and how to deal with employees who utilize marijuana recreationally, when workplace drug tests turn up positive. Keith Conners and Leon Eisenberg published a study on the effects of Ritalin (Methylphenidate) to a group of emotionally disturbed children (Conners & Eisenberg, 1963). Additionally, over the years 2000, 2002, and 2004, Ritalin use has increased most rapidly in the United States. This poses the question – Is there a rise in the diagnosis of ADHD or are psychostimulants being overprescribed? This article caused significant news coverage, despite percentage inaccuracies and the fact that parents were not actually coerced (Mays, 2006).
Please watch the video below to learn more about the recent development of prescription stimulant abuse on college campuses. Mirapex was developed in 1997 to control the symptoms of Parkinson's disease and is also prescribed for people with Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). According to the product web page, Celebrex may increase the chance of a heart attack or stroke that can lead to death. While going under treatment, men should be aware of a ‘tiny' possible effect, such as a decrease in their testicles size. Lariam (generic name mefloquine) was invented by researchers at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research to prevent and treat outbreaks of malaria in the U.S. But some pills don't just leave a bad taste -- they can completely distort your sense of taste.
According to the product web page, Plavix is generally well-tolerated, but it is not for everyone.
This report provides an overview of current prescription drug use in the United States, how many and what kinds of drugs are currently being prescribed, and who receives them.
One out of every five children used at least one or more prescription drugs compared with 9 of every 10 adults aged 60 and over.
The Committee states that most Colorado employers should not have to change their drug policies at all.
Then, if there are any changes to the law, its enforcement, or users’ rights, you’ll be able to update your policies accordingly. More than half of such tests are considered “false positives” due to being prescribed the medication. The positivity rate in pre-employment urine drug screening for the federally mandated, safety-sensitive workforce remained unchanged from 2011 through the first half of 2012, but the positivity rate from random testing among these workers was down 6.7% in the first six months of 2012 compared to 2011.
The American medical profession decided Ritalin and other psychostimulants would be acceptable in treating symptoms of minimal brain dysfunction (MBD) and hyperactivity (LeFever et al., 2003). However, Strattera (Atomoxetine) has side effect of its own, like nausea and insomnia (Hanwella et al., 2011). However, this disturbing side effect can be stopped by ceasing the intake of the medication. Serious skin reactions or stomach and intestine problems, such as bleeding and ulcers, can occur without warning and may cause death. Younger men may also experience decreased sperm counts while on testosterone replacement therapy. Because of its drug action, clopidogrel can make it easier for you to bleed, even from a minor injury. Sample weights, accounting for the differential probabilities of selection, nonresponse, and noncoverage were used for analyses. This was the main starting point that began the reliance on drug use to treat behavior problems and would increase over the next three decades. Some patients reported short-term memory loss, such as not remembering what they did the day before.
PROPECIA, for example, was developed to treat mild to moderate male pattern hair loss on the top of head and middle front of head in men only. Until recently, it was given routinely to soldiers deployed overseas as well as many tourists. Vasotec (generic name enalapril) is a drug designed to treat high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. You may also have bleeding in the inside of your body, such as in your stomach or intestines. Those who were without a regular place for health care, health insurance, or prescription drug benefit were less likely to have used prescription medication compared with their counterparts. Variance estimates accounted for the complex survey design using Taylor series linearization. It has been shown that the drug for propecia, Finasteride, increases both testosterone and estrogen while lowering serum levels of DHT. Don't worry, you are definitely going to know you have an internal bleeding if you start coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.
This side effect can also happen with patients who take statins, a class of drugs that are supposed to lower cholesterol. The increase in estrogen creates a side effect called gynecomastia, or breast enlargement, in some men, along with increased body fat and loss of libido. Both soldiers and tourists have reported experiencing frightening hallucinations as well as violent psychotic behavior soon after taking the drug.
Vasotec can cause you to lose your sense of smell (a condition known as anosmia) and taste, as well as have ringing in your ears (tinnitus) and eye problems like blurred vision and dry eyes. Duane Graveline, a former astronaut, reported coming back from a short walk and not recognizing his wife while he was taking Lipitor.
Since the early 2000s, the FDA has required that patients be screened for a history of depression and psychosis before taking Lariam. All of these are referred to as minor side effects, but if you were experiencing them all at once, you might consider them major. For comparison of estimates by race and ethnic groups, adjustments for multiple comparisons were made using the Bonferroni method (9).

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