Effects of a pilot multidisciplinary clinic for frequent attending elderly patients on deprescribing

Mudge, Alison, Radnedge, Katherine, Kasper, Karen, Mullins, Robert, Adsett, Julie, Rofail, Serena, Lloyd, Sophie, & Barras, Michael (2016) Effects of a pilot multidisciplinary clinic for frequent attending elderly patients on deprescribing. Australian Health Review, 40(1), pp. 86-91.

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  • Multimorbidity and associated polypharmacy are risk factors for hospital re-admission. The Targeting Hospitalization Risks in Vulnerable Elders (THRIVE) clinic is a novel multidisciplinary out-patient clinic to improve transitions of care and decrease re-admission risk for older medical patients with frequent hospital admissions. This pilot study examined the effect of the THRIVE model on medication count, tablet load and potentially inappropriate medicines (PIMs).


  • Participants with frequent medical admissions were referred within 2 weeks of discharge from hospital and assessed at baseline and then at 4 and 12 weeks by the THRIVE team. A thorough reconciliation of all medications was performed collaboratively by a clinical pharmacist and a physician. Optimising medications, including deprescribing, was in collaboration with the participants’ general practitioner. The complete medication history of each patient was compared retrospectively by an independent assessor at baseline and after the 12-week clinic, comparing total number of regular medications, tablet load and PIMs (measured using the Screening Tool of Older Persons Prescriptions (STOPP) tool).


  • All 17 participants attending the pilot THRIVE clinic were included in the study. At 12 weeks, there was a significant reduction in mean medication count (from 14.3 to 11.2 medications; P < 0.001) and mean tablet load (from 20.5 to 16.9 tablets; P < 0.01). There was an absolute reduction in the total number of PIMs from 38 to 14. Common medications deprescribed included opioids, tricyclic antidepressants, benzodiazepines and diuretics.


  • Patients who attended the THRIVE clinic had a significant reduction in medication count and tablet load. The pilot study demonstrates the potential benefits of a multidisciplinary out-patient clinic to improve prescribing and reduce unwarranted medications in an elderly population. An adequately powered comparative study would allow assessment of clinical outcomes and costs.

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ID Code: 95642
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1071/AH14219
ISSN: 0156-5788
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 AHHA
Deposited On: 18 May 2016 23:23
Last Modified: 02 Aug 2016 01:46

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