Adverse drug events are a leading cause of death.
While figuring out if a person’s death was caused by their medication is both controversial and medically challenging, medication-related deaths occur everyday in the U.S., with some experts estimating that over 100,000 people die in a single year because of a pharmaceutical drug.
Millions of drug safety issues have been reported.
In 2019, over 2 million reports of medication-related health issues were received by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA).
Medication-related health issues have cost billions of dollars to treat.
According to one study, $526 billion was spent to treat adverse drug events in 2016 alone. Meanwhile, in that same year, Americans spent less money buying prescription drugs at $450 billion.
Medication safety research is under-funded.
Privately-funded clinical drug research is largely devoted to bringing new drugs to market or re-labeling old drugs for new indications. Less research is conducted on drug safety issues related to over-the-counter and prescription drugs already being marketed, prescribed and sold in stores now.
Poison control centers receive numerous calls related to pharmaceutical drug exposures.
In fact, out of the top 5 poison exposures received by call centers nationally in 2018, 3 of the 5 were related to a pharmaceutical drug.