Science & Research
Take Time To Care ... About Using Medicines Wisely
Thanks to modern science, Americans can now benefit from more medications than ever before. Unfortunately, that also means Americans have a larger risk of misusing them. Today, over half of all people who use medications don't use them correctly. The consequences can be serious, even fatal. Adverse drug reactions cause as many as 10% of all hospital admissions, and medication misuse is estimated to cost Americans over $76 billion a year. Medication errors can be particularly pronounced when people lack information, have limited reading skills, and have language or cultural barriers.
This risk is especially acute for women, because they often dispense medications to family members, and women over 45 use more medicines than any other group. To deal with this serious problem and to help women lead healthier, longer lives, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Office of Women's Health (OWH) created the "Women's Health: Take Time To Care" (TTTC) national public awareness campaign about safe medicine use. (Highlights of the campaign.) The only campaign of its kind in the U.S., TTTC targets women with a critical message: "Use Medicines Wisely." In addition to disseminating safety information through consumer literature and the media, TTTC promotes local, interactive educational sessions led by pharmacists and other health professionals throughout the country. (Read what women had to say about the campaign.)
With the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) as an official co-sponsor, the TTTC campaign was an unprecedented partnership of more than 80 nonprofit and corporate supporters, as well as thousands of chain drug stores across the country. By leveraging these partners' energy and resources, TTTC delivered medicine safety messages to local audiences across the country, from senior citizens to students, Native Americans to Hmong immigrants, CEOs to waitresses.
Use Medicines Wisely Campaign
"My Medicines" brochure
(in English and Spanish, and also in Cambodian, Chinese, Hmong, Japanese, Korean, Laotian, Polish, Samoan, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese)
*Urgent Message for Women
30 - 50% of people don't take their medicine as prescribed. FDA estimates this costs the American public $76.6 billion/year in preventable medicine-related illness.
2.8 billion prescriptions will be dispensed this year.
3 out of 4 doctor visits result in a prescription.
Adverse drug reactions are estimated to be responsible for as many as 10% of all hospital admissions.