A secondary analysis of a South Australian prospective cohort study has recently investigated the prevalence of potentially inappropriate medication (PIM) use at hospital admission and discharge. In addition, the contribution of PIMs to hospital admission was assessed among residents of aged care facilities with or without dementia. 181 participants aged 75 years and older (median age 87.5 years) using 5 or more medications prior to hospitalisation and discharged to residential aged care facilities were included in the analysis. 50.3% of participants were diagnosed with dementia. Patients with dementia had fewer PIMs than patients with no dementia, both at hospital admission (83.5% vs 93.3%) and discharge (85.7% vs 92.2%). Expert clinicians in geriatric medicine estimated PIM use to contribute 28.1% to hospital admission in participants taking at least 1 PIM at admission (n = 45). It was established that PIM use was significant among older people admitted to hospital – the continued use and potential harm associated with these medications can be reduced by directed interventions after medication reviews during hospital admission. Details of the analysis can be viewed here.

Contributed by Australian Medication Safety Services Associate – Isabella Singh