Article brought to you by: Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Nearly 70 percent of all Americans are on some form of prescription drug

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
June 20th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A comedy catchphrase in early 1980s America was "Take a pill .." A lot of Americans have taken that to heart as research has now found that nearly 70 percent of Americans are on at least one prescription drug. Furthermore, more than half receive at least two prescriptions.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mayo Clinic researchers report that antibiotics, antidepressants and painkiller opioids are the most common prescriptions given to Americans. Twenty percent of U.S. patients were also found to be on five or more prescription medications.

"Often when people talk about health conditions they're talking about chronic conditions such as heart disease or diabetes," Dr. St. Sauver said in a press release. "However, the second most common prescription was for antidepressants - that suggests mental health is a huge issue and is something we should focus on. And the third most common drugs were opioids, which is a bit concerning considering their addicting nature."

Distressingly, nearly one in four women ages 50-64 was found to be on an antidepressant, with 13 percent of the overall population also on antidepressants. Seventeen percent of people in the study were being prescribed antibiotics, and 13 percent were on painkilling opioids.

The study found that as a whole, women and older adults received the most prescription drugs. Antidepressants and opioids were most common among young and middle-aged adults.

The percentage of people who took at least one prescription drug in the past month increased from 44 percent in 1999-2000 to 48 percent in 2007-08. Expenditures on prescription drugs reached $250 billion in 2009, and accounted for 12 percent of total personal health care expenditures.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the percent of persons using at least one prescription drug in the past month increased nearly 50 percent between 2007 and 2010. It's an ongoing issue . as researchers say prescription drug spending will only increase in the future.

Article brought to you by: Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)