Diabetes Medication Adherence Cuts Costs by 4%, Boosts Outcomes
For the 11.6 million commercially-insured patients using diabetic medications, this could produce a total savings of more than $210 million per year in medical and pharmaceutical costs while reducing long-term complications from the extremely common metabolic disease.
“Adherence to diabetes medications is critical not only for preventing the catastrophic consequences of the disease, but also for lowering total healthcare costs,” explains the report.
While adherence rates have increased slightly since 2014, only 63 percent of diabetic adults with commercial insurance were adherent to their drug regimens in 2016, Express Scripts found.
This relatively low number indicates a significant opportunity for pharmacists and healthcare providers to improve the way they educate patients, deliver medications, and foster continued engagement.
READ MORE: Medication Nonadherence Challenges 70% of Statin Patients
Payers spend more than $9000 per diabetic individual on medical expenses, which is close to triple what it costs to care for a beneficiary without diabetes. Those costs can rise drastically when patients do not have access to injected or oral medications, either due to financial hardship or behavioral issues.
Out-of-pocket drug costs for patients are on the rise, significantly complicating the issue. A quarter of patients are paying more for their drugs in 2017 than they did a year ago, says one recent survey, and 14 percent have skipped filling a prescription because they could not afford it.
Failing to fill prescriptions can have serious impacts on individual health as well Continue reading