BioScience Trends. 2021;15(4):262-265. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2021.01254)

China should emphasize key issues inherent in rational medication management for the elderly

Tang Q, Wang C, Wu WH, Cao Y, Chen G, Lu J


According to China's Seventh National Census, 18.70% of a total of 1.41 billion people were 60 or older and 13.50% were 65 or older, so China's population is increasingly aging. In conjunction with China's socioeconomic and scientific and technological development and its promotion of medical insurance-related policies, rational medication management for the elderly is a concern in order to control the risk of polypharmacy. This paper summarizes and discusses the following five key issues inherent in rational medication management: i) an increase in serious polypharmacy and the potential risks of medication; ii) a lack of medication consultation service and medication withdraw without healthcare providers' supervision; iii) poor medication compliance among the elderly; iv) insufficient quantity and incompetence of pharmaceutical staffing; and v) limited awareness of pharmaceutical services and lack of trust in the ability of pharmacists. Based on a discussion of factors influencing these issues, suggestions have been put forward in the hopes that China emphasizes rational medication management in order to reduce the risk of polypharmacy and the disease burden of the elderly in China.

KEYWORDS: polypharmacy, aging of the population, clinical pharmacy, medication compliance

Full Text: