The Staggering Cost of Non-Adherence

Total estimated cost of Non-Adherence: $300 billion

  • 10-25% of all hospital admissions
  • 40% of hospital admissions for age 65+
  • $2,000 annually in additional MD visits per patient 340 deaths per day
  • 50% of all patients are taking their medicine incorrectly
  • 36% of all pharmacy sales are lost due to non-adherence

Studies have provided the following:
More than 125,000 Americans die each year due to prescription medication non-adherence, twice the number killed in automobile accidents. Every day, prescription non-adherence costs more than $270 million in additional hospitalization and other medical costs. 9 out of very 10 outpatients are taking prescribed medicines improperly, contributing to prolonged or additional illness. People who miss doses need 3 times as many doctor visits as others face increased medical costs.

When prescriptions are written:

  • 1/3 of patients take medicine as directed
  • 1/3 take some of the medicine
  • 1/3 never fill the prescription

Nearly 60% of the prescription medication non-adherence problems could be prevented by improving adherence.
At any given time, regardless of age group, it is estimated up to 59% of those on five or more medications are in non-adherence. This event alone is responsible for:

  • 11% of all hospital admissions
  • 23% of all nursing home admissions
  • Additional $2,000/yr spent on healthcare costs
  • 3 times as many doctor's visits
  • 20-25% of employer's healthcare expenses
  • $300 billion lost to complications of medication errors (U.S.)
  • 1.5 million people each year are injured (U.S.)
  • 218,000 people die as a result of medication errors (U.S.)

To increase adherence
At least one study has shown that the simple use of an adherence or apothecary aid (e.g. pill cases, pill boxes, pill reminders, etc.) can improve adherence by as much as 450%


When a medicine or supplemental is hard to swallow
12% of Americans over 65 are clinically diagnosed with Dysphagia (difficulty swallowing). A pill grinder or pill crusher can be a useful tool as an aid to compliance if someone is avoiding taking medicines or supplements are prescribed because they are difficult to swallow.