A Consumer Reports study found that Americans’ prescription drug use has increased by 85 percent over the last two decades while the U.S. population has increased by only 21 percent.
In 1997, there were 2.4 billion prescriptions filled. By 2016, the number had ballooned to 4.5 billion.
Those numbers might be acceptable if the drug therapies were improving our health and outcomes. Sadly, that’s not happening.
Americans continue to rank last among Western countries in nearly every health indicator, from infant mortality to lifespan. We even have more chronic and acute disease than other Western countries.
To make matters worse, the U.S. spends more on healthcare than any other country. We spend nearly 20 percent of our gross national product on healthcare. That far exceeds the expenditure of any other Western country.
Much of that added expense can be attributed to taking too many expensive and ineffective prescription medications.
We should all be asking the question, “Why aren’t we healthier for taking all these medications?”
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