A report warned that many patients in England are being prescribed unnecessary and even harmful treatments.
The review suggests that 10 percent of items delivered by primary care services are inappropriate or could be replaced with more appropriate treatment.
About 15 percent of people are currently taking five or more medications a day, some to treat the side effects of others.
The government appoints a prescriber tsar to oversee the problem and help stop the waste.
Dr Keith Ridge, Director of Pharmaceuticals for England, said: “Medicines do people a lot of good and this report is absolutely not about taking away treatments or services from people when they are effective. But drugs can also cause harm and be wasted.
The number of items dispensed by general practitioners and other primary care services has doubled in recent years, from an average of 10 per person in 1996 to around 20 per person, according to the report.
About 65 percent of hospitalizations are due to adverse drug reactions, a figure that rises to 20 percent among those over 65.
Professor Martin Marshall, President of the Royal College of GPs, said: “Prescribing is a core skill for general practitioners and many of our fellow nurses and pharmacists in primary care, and doing all we can to prescribe the most drug. appropriate for our patients, in a We strive to do this on a daily basis in an evidence-based manner – and in the vast majority of cases, this review shows that it is happening.
“With our growing and aging population, with more and more patients living with multiple chronic conditions, many people take multiple medications to manage their various illnesses, and the interplay between various medications is something prescribers will take into account. account. “
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