Safe and Healthy Aging


Safe and Healthy Aging Brochure

Risk Assessment Tool: Falls

The Beers List: Inappropriate medications for adults age 65+

Medication Review Payment Options

Pocket Medication Card

Medication List

Pocket Medication Card

Self- Reliance & Independence Community Solutions Team

Is Your Loved One At Risk?

In Dane County in 2009, almost 19% of seniors admitted to emergency rooms suffered a fall or negative drug reaction (the unintended negative impact of one or more prescriptions, over-the-counter meds, or supplements). You can help change that.

FACT: Seniors who take more than 5 medications are 50% likely to have a negative drug reaction. When the number of medications increases to 8, that likelihood rises to 100%.

In 2010, research led by United Way’s Delegation on Safe and Healthy Aging revealed that the average Dane County senior takes 6.4 medications daily. This puts the average patient at a greater than 50% risk of a negative drug reaction.

Negative drug reactions can lead to a host of symptoms, including: nausea, dizziness, delirium, falls, incontinence and increased risk of bleeding.

These symptoms often lead to hospitalization, loss of independence, additional medications, increased levels of required care, and decreased quality of life.

What can you do?

Preventative action by caregivers and loved ones can reduce the risk for negative drug reactions and falls. The first and easiest step is to make an assessment of the patient’s drug regimen. Count the bottles in the medicine cabinet (and keep in mind that eye drops, vitamins and over-the-counter medicines count as well). If the number of meds is 5 or more, it may be time to act. Download the documents on the left for additional help in reducing your loved one’s risk.