(NG56) Clinical assessment and management of multimorbidity

 In Clinical Guidelines, NICE guidelines

The care of patients with multiple conditions requires additional considerations. Single disease guidelines can become contradictory with multimorbidity so NICE (NG56) recommends a tailored approach for individual patients. Medication can be a particular challenge, for example:

  • 30% of patients with a long-term physical illness also have mental illness
  • 20% of patients with two conditions are prescribed four to nine drugs (polypharmacy)
  • 66% of elderly patients (over 70 years) take five or more drugs, with one-third of this group taking nine or more drugs per day

Sometimes polypharmacy is appropriate, but taking more medication will increase the risk of adverse drug interactions. Input from a clinical pharmacist is recommended, and this can be obtained from your Ashtons visiting pharmacist or from the medical information pharmacist at 0345 222 3550.

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng56

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