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Revista médica de Chile

Print version ISSN 0034-9887


GARCIA A, Luz María et al. The cost of polypharmacy in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2015, vol.143, n.5, pp.606-611. ISSN 0034-9887.

Background: Polypharmacy or the concomitant use of three or more medications, may increase the complexity of health care and its costs. Aim: To determine the costs of polypharmacy in patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in a Mexican population sample. Patients and Methods: Analysis of health care costs in 257 patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus from two family care facilities, who had at least five consultations during one year. The cost of professional care by family physicians, pharmacological care and medications were considered to calculate the total expenses. The price of medications and the number of units consumed in one year were used to determine pharmacological expenses. Medications were grouped to determine costs derived from complications and concomitant diseases. Costs were calculated in US dollars (USD). Results: The mean cost derived from family physician fees was USD 82.32 and from pharmacy fees USD 29.37. The mean cost of medications for diabetes treatment was USD 33.31, for the management of complications USD 13.9 and for management of concomitant diseases USD 23.7, rendering a total cost of USD 70.92. Thus, the total annual care cost of a diabetic patient was USD 182.61. Conclusions: Medications represent less than 50% of total expenses of diabetic patients with polypharmacy.

Keywords : Diabetes complications; Diabetes Mellitus Type 2; Health care costs; Health economics and organizations; Polypharmacy.

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