Better Medication Use Could Save U.S. $213B Per Year

Improvements on six "levers of opportunity" in medication utilization could have reduced healthcare spending enough to save the U.S. $213 billion in 2012, according to a report by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics.


The six areas for improvement and their savings potential across care settings as outlined in the report are as follows:


1. Nonadherence to medicine guidelines — $105.5 billion
2. Delayed evidence-based use of medicines — $39.5 billion
3. Antibiotic misuse or overuse — $35.1 billion
4. Medication errors — $20 billion
5. Suboptimal generic use — $11.9 billion
6. Mismanaged polypharmacy — $1.3 billion


Savings would be realized through 246 million fewer unneeded or improper prescriptions, 78 million fewer outpatient visits, 10 million fewer hospital admissions and 4 million emergency room visits.


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