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Reporters for Just Say ‘Know’ to Prescription Drugs Initiative Find MD’s Failure to Discuss Side Effects ‘Significantly Higher’ Than New Study Stated (press release)

Monday, November 20, 2006 by: NewsTarget
Tags: health news, Natural News, nutrition

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UCLA head researcher says, “We were very liberal.” Actual percentage of physicians who fail to discuss risks of prescribed medication are “much higher” than 65 percent reported previously.

Today, the Just Say “Know” to Prescription Drugs Campaign, aimed at getting one million people to stop and reevaluate the medications they are taking, reported that the percentage of physicians who failed to explain the potential adverse effects of the medications prescribed to patients was significantly higher than the 65 percent reported in an independent study earlier this week. The study conducted by researchers at the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, concluded that when initiating new medications, physicians often fail to communicate critical elements of medication use. But today, Derjung M. Tarn, MD, head researcher for the study, told reporters from the “Just Say Know” initiative that the numbers were “significantly” understated. The disparity results from the methodology applied. According to Dr. Tarn, “We were very liberal.” Dr Tarn told the team covering the story that “if the doctor even said, you won’t experience any side affects from the medication, we counted that as a briefing. Otherwise the percentage would have been much higher.”

“These independent findings confirm the concerns that drive this campaign,” said Dr. Laurence Simon, psychologist, co-founder of the Just Say “Know” to Prescription Drugs Campaign and one of the reporters who interviewed Dr. Tarn. “We’re concerned with the findings, but we’re even more concerned that the study was not more broadly and prominently covered in the media,” said Simon.

Dr. Tarn indicated that researchers did not specifically measure how often physicians discussed non-drug alternatives. When asked if they found any significant evidence that non-drug alternatives are being routinely considered or discussed, Dr. Tarn indicated that it wasn’t enough for her to remember. When asked about the Just Say “Know” Campaign Dr. Tarn said, "I just found out about it this morning, but I think it’s a good idea.”

“This report makes it clear why we need to reach one million people, one million parents and get them to take our form to their healthcare providers,” said Dr. Greg Tefft. “The system is fundamentally broken.”

During the month of October, the initiative aims to get one million parents to take a second look at the prescription medications they are giving their children. Parents will be encouraged to download a form that allows them to thoughtfully evaluate the drugs they are consenting to give to their child. The form collects specific information from their prescribing physician, pharmacist or healthcare provider and requests the provider’s signature attesting that they have fully informed the parent of the risks and benefits of the prescribed medication, as well as non-drug alternatives.

The campaign has declared October Just Say “Know” to Prescription Drugs Month and has scheduled a conference in Washington, D.C. on October 7th to officially launch the campaign.

Organizations and individuals who want to participate in the campaign may go to any of the following websites, look for the Just Say “Know” to Prescription Drugs logo, and download the sheet titled "Take This Form and Sign It." Instructions will be provided on each form.

Psych Truth.Org Laurence Simon Ph.D. www.psychtruth.org/justsayknow.htm

MESICS Fitness Jim Manganiello, Ed.D. http://www.mesicsfitness.com/jsn-news.htm

For more information email us, call 212-861-7400 or visit www.psychtruth.org/justsayknow.htm http://www.icspp.org

Contact: Dr. Dominick Riccio Phone: 212-861-7400

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