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Few Patients Fill High-Intensity Statin Rx After CHD Discharge

Twenty-seven percent of Medicare beneficiaries fill prescription for high-intensity statin

TUESDAY, Jan. 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Only about a quarter of Medicare beneficiaries fill a high-intensity statin prescription after discharge from hospitalization for a coronary heart disease (CHD) event, according to a study published in the Jan. 27 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Robert S. Rosenson, M.D., from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, and colleagues examined the proportion of Medicare beneficiaries filling prescriptions for high-intensity statins after hospital discharge for a CHD event. Data were collected retrospectively using a 5 percent random sample of Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 to 74 years.

The researchers found that 27 percent of the first post-discharge fills among 8,762 Medicare beneficiaries filling a statin prescription after a CHD event were for a high-intensity statin. The percent filling a high-intensity statin post-discharge was 23.1 percent for beneficiaries not taking statins pre-hospitalization, 9.4 percent for those taking low/moderate-intensity statins pre-hospitalization, and 80.7 percent for those taking high-intensity statins pre-hospitalization. The multivariable adjusted rate ratios for filling a high-intensity statin were 4.01 for those taking high-intensity statins and 0.45 for those taking low/moderate-intensity statins before their CHD event, compared with beneficiaries not on statin therapy pre-hospitalization.

"The majority of Medicare beneficiaries do not fill high-intensity statins after hospitalization for CHD," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Amgen, which provided a grant to the University of Alabama Birmingham for this study.

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