Many people in the US, particularly the elderly, take more than one prescribed medication. CDC (2014) reported that between 2009 and 2012 nearly 48% of persons asked used at least one prescription drug, 22% used three or more prescription drugs, and nearly 11% used five or more.
In a recent study published by the Mayo Clinic, seven out of 10 Americans take at least one prescription drug. The most commonly prescribed drug is antibiotics — taken by 17 percent of Americans — followed by antidepressants and opioids — each taken by 13 percent of Americans. In addition, findings showed that:
When people take multiple medications, there is a greater risk for confusion about which medications are taken, when they are taken, and what they are being taken for. There is also a higher risk for drug interactions and increased side effects and adverse reactions.
Sometimes because of the sheer number of medications being prescribed, they may be forgotten, become too much of a bother, or a financial burden which can significantly impact client compliance and lead to poor health outcomes.
In this written assignment, you will be conducting an interview of a client who is taking multiple prescribed medications (three or more) and submitting a written paper describing the findings from the interview. You will then develop a Client Teaching Plan. Your instructor will assist you in the selection of the client. You must achieve a “pass” in this assignment to satisfactorily fulfill the requirements for the Pharmacology course.
The three parts of this assignment are:
Conduct an interview of a client who is taking multiple medications (polypharmacy). You must prepare the client before the interview by explaining why you are conducting the interview. You can say “my assignment is to find out about the medications you are taking so I can determine if you need more information about what you are taking”. You must always get permission from the client to conduct the interview and you must tell the client how the information will be used. You can say, “I will not be using your name in the information I share and I will be submitting it to my instructor only for this student assignment”. If there is important information that needs to be communicated to you, your doctor, family, or nurse, my instructor will assist me in following up on this”. Tell the client you will take no more than 30-45 minutes for the interview.
There may be a family member or significant other present during the interview. That is fine. Be sure to identify who answered a question and if possible always have the client answer first. Always thank the client (and others) when you complete the interview.
Do not use recording equipment for this interview. Have a notepad and pencil or pen and explain that you will be taking notes. When the interview is over, go to a quiet place and take some time to fill in any information you did not jot down. If you wait, you will not remember.
When setting the environment for the interview, make sure the client (and others) is comfortable and you are comfortably seated facing the client. If possible, do the interview in a quiet place. Ask questions slowly giving the client time to answer. Pay attention to the client’s hearing and ability to respond to the questions. Be sure your non-verbal communication demonstrates you are calm and relaxed.
Use the following interview question guidelines when conducting the interview. Be aware that the client may not be able to answer each of the questions with detailed information. Collect as much information as the client is able and willing to give you. Remember you are the interviewer so you will be collecting information and not making any comments about the information shared by the client except to ask for further clarification if you are not sure what was said or need more detail if it is available.
For the following questions, paraphrase the client’s answers for your written paper.
Ask a final question about whether the client would like to tell you anything further about their medications.
Write a paper describing your research and findings about the medications being taken and the results of the interview. Report your findings in a 3-5 page written paper. In your paper include the reason for each medication, the drug classification, the route of administration, the dose, and possible side effects/adverse reactions.
Use accurate and appropriate spelling and grammar and APA Editorial Format for sources used in your written paper.
Develop a teaching plan for this client based on your findings. Based on the findings from the interview, develop a 2-3 page teaching plan to include the following:
Submit your completed assignments by following the directions linked below. Please check the Course Calendar for specific due dates.
Save your assignment as a Microsoft Word document. (Mac users, please remember to append the “.docx” extension to the filename.) The name of the file should be your first initial and last name, followed by an underscore and the name of the assignment, and an underscore and the date. An example is shown below:
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