How many times have you heard a patient make this request in order to get a better night's sleep?
Sometimes patients don’t fully understand the risks and benefits of treatment options, and sometimes clinicians don’t either! Lack of understanding often leads to overuse. Patients and physicians need more support and tools to help make decisions about which services are really necessary for their health.
Deprescribing.org is a Canadian group whose mission is to share and exchange information about deprescribing approaches and deprescribing research with the public, health care providers and researchers. Their patient education brochure was the subject of the EMPOWER randomized trial – Eliminating Medications Through Patient Ownership of End Results. This trial tested a theory-based tool (
the EMPOWER brochure
) aimed at empowering older adults to act as drivers of safer prescribing practices. The brochures recommend equally or more effective therapeutic substitutes to medication and a step-wise tapering protocol.
The results show that reading the brochure on sedative-hypnotic use led to an increase in patients' self-reported knowledge and drug-related risk perceptions, an increase in discussions with physicians and/or pharmacists about the information, and discontinued benzodiazepine use among chronic consumers of inappropriate benzodiazepines.
Some of the best parts of the brochure include: