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Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


Graduate School

First Advisor

Donald Y. Shirachi

First Committee Member

Judith K. Jones

Second Committee Member

Marvin H. Malone

Third Committee Member

William J. Christopherson[?], Jr.

Fourth Committee Member

Arthur O. Stone


Elderly people, or those over 65 years of age, are known to comprise 10% of the United States population today and are projected to reach nearly 12% by the year 2000. Further, 5% of this population is reported to be institutionalized resulting in approximately 1.1 million chronic care patients or 0.5% of the population. The use of drugs in this population comprises approximately 25% of the prescription drug market in the United States which is directly related to the greater occurrence of pathological problems associated with the aging process. While it is evident that the beneficial outcome of drug therapies is partially related to the increased longevity observed in these elderly people, this population is also well-known to be the most prone to adverse drug reactions. Factors complicating drug use in the elderly include high usage, chronic therapy, long-term hospitalization, inappropriate and multiple prescribing of drugs, inadequate monitoring of adverse drug effects, susceptibility to physical deterioration and senility.

Therefore, the objective of this project is to test the hypothesis that the quality and cost of drug therapy in SNF patients can be significantly improved by implementing measures to improve the utilization of drugs.





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