January 20, 2019
Close-up of a senior man holding tablets in hand.
Wellness Tip

Many People Don't Take Their Blood Pressure Meds

by Berkeley Wellness  

About one-quarter of people over 65 who are prescribed blood pressure drugs may not be taking them, according to a new CDC report, which focused on enrollees in Medicare Part D, the federal drug insurance program.

Seven out of 10 adults over 65 have high blood pressure (hypertension), but nearly half do not have it under control, and a major reason for this is medication nonadherence—that is, many of them don’t take the drugs they’ve been prescribed. The study de­­fined nonadherence as taking the drugs on less than 80 percent of days, based on how often people re­­­­filled their prescriptions. Since it did not in­­clude those who are prescribed the drugs but never start taking them or never even fill the prescriptions, the study undoubtedly under­estimated the problem.

Also see Taking Your Medicine for more about drug nonadherence.