The Polypharmacy Challenge Blog
I have just returned from the annual scientific meeting of the Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC), which was held at Warwick University last week. The central concerns of the APOLLO-MM project - multimorbidity and polypharmacy – featured prominently in this year’s meeting. This may seem unsurprising given that care of patients with multimorbidity is very much the ‘norm’ for the generalist medical practitioner. But it was encouraging to see an increasing emphasis on how to account for the complexity of multimorbidity in research contexts, and there is certainly a growing army of researchers trying to tackle ‘inappropriate’ polypharmacy.
We officially launched our research project on May 2nd 2017 with an event held at the Royal College of General Practitioners, a perfect venue given how central general practice and primary care is to our project. Thirty participants including patients, general practitioners, pharmacists, university researchers, and research and policy advisors from the voluntary sector attended.
Deborah, APOLLO-MM’s principal investigator, kicked off the meeting outlining some of the key challenges of polypharmacy, including:
- the burden it places on patients
- that most available clinical guidance considers diseases as singular entities rather than as a collection experienced together
- the expense to the NHS and the environmental damage it causes when medicines are unused and wasted