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New PIMsPlus tool helps evaluate risky medications for older adults

November 19, 2020 — The David Braley Primary Care Research Collaborative at the Department of Family Medicine, McMaster University, alongside partners TaperMD and the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), today announced the launch of the PIMsPlus.org website. The new site provides physicians and pharmacists streamlined information about Potentially Inappropriate Medications (PIMs), to help reduce the risk of negative consequences of drugs, which impact the quality of life of millions of older adults every year.

Research shows that two out of three Canadians over the age of 65 take at least five different prescription medications and that taking too many medications is associated with a higher risk of negative consequences like mobility-related decline, falls, hospitalizations, impaired cognition, and reduced quality of life.

“If you’re taking more than five pills, you’re twice as likely to have a side effect than if you’re taking fewer than two,” says Dr. Dee Mangin, Associate Chair, Research, and the David Braley & Nancy Gordon Chair in the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University. “I see reducing overmedication and inappropriate medications as one of the best and most cost-effective opportunities we have for improving health care and the lives of older adults in the next 30 years. Medication reviews need to become as routine as the flu shot, and this open access site makes accessing the evidence much easier for pharmacists and prescribers.”

“With older populations taking more medications, the growth of this demographic, and the number of new medications being introduced, the need for medication reviews and tools to support the increasing complexity is greater than ever. There are a number of tools and lists out there, but we wanted a simple, free electronic resource to help clinicians and their patients evaluate and then address potentially inappropriate medication use.” says Dr. Chad Worz, Executive Director and CEO of ASCP.

“Our mission is to support clinicians to optimize patient care, and we need evidence-based tools to address a broader problem,” says Peter Wood, CEO, TaperMD. “PIMsPlus helps clinicians identify potentially inappropriate medications by bringing together information in a free, easy-to-use format.”

Individuals who believe they might be taking too many medications or taking medications that no longer benefit them can visit PIMsplus.org and take the Medication Review Benefit Quiz.

About McMaster University Department of Family Medicine
Since 1967, the Department of Family Medicine (DFM) at McMaster University has been making a difference in our communities. As a department and as individuals, we aim to support people and their families in staying happy, healthy and active at all stages of their lives. All areas of our department, and each member of our team, play a part in impacting people’s lives locally, nationally and globally.

A DFM multi-year research project on a Team Approach to Polypharmacy Evaluation and Reduction (TAPER) uses TaperMD to support the research.

For more information on the DFM TAPER Project , visit:  taper.fammedmcmaster.ca

TaperMD (a division of Data Based Medicine Americas Ltd.)

PIMsPlus is one of the elements of the TaperMD tool that was created to help doctors, pharmacists, and their patients work together to address the serious problems of polypharmacy and medication side effects, especially in older adults.

TaperMD integrates with regular consultation processes among medical professionals as they seek to manage multiple medications for their patients. toolTaperMD’s medication review tool was developed in conjunction with the Department of Family Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada and is being used in clinical trials in multiple locations in Canada and Australia. For more information, visit: TaperMD.com

About American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP)
ASCP is a membership association that represents pharmacists, health care professionals, and students serving the unique medication needs of older adults. ASCP is an international organization with members located in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and 12 countries. The society’s mission is to promote healthy aging by empowering pharmacists with education, resources, and innovative opportunities. Learn more at ASCP.com.

Founded in 1969, ASCP is a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization based in Alexandria, Virginia. The ASCP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization; its purpose is to carry out the charitable – including scientific, literary, and educational – purposes of ASCP. Learn more at ASCPfoundation.org.

The ASCP Foundation is dedicated to educating older adults and caregivers about principles and practices associated with safe and appropriate use of medicines. The ASCP Foundation’s unique focus is the development, integration, and application of knowledge regarding medication use in the older adult population and the practice of senior care pharmacy to optimize health outcomes.

McMaster University Department of Family MedicineMichael G. DeGroote School of Medicine