For a large portion of Australians, medicine is a vital part of life which they need to manage on a daily or weekly basis. In fact, two-thirds (65 percent) of the Australian population require prescription drugs each year. The need for prescription medicine is particularly significant within the veteran community, with over 30,000 Aussie veterans requiring five or more unique medications to cure or relieve symptoms of health conditions.
However, the mismanagement of medications remains prominent. An estimated 250,000 hospital admissions each year in Australia is medication-related, with incidents including adverse medicine events, inappropriate medicine selection, or under or overdosing. Through better management systems, over two-thirds of these cases are preventable.
To combat medication misuse among veterans, Veteran Benefits Australia (VBA) have introduced Medication Management Programs. These programs are fully funded services for DVA Gold Card holders, with eligible veterans receiving all their medications free of charge and packed into easy-to-use medication packs, all delivered to their door each month. The medication pack delivery service for veterans will assist with the management of conditions and make managing medication easier.
After completing an initial health assessment with a VBA nurse, veterans will continue to receive support from a range of healthcare professionals, including regularly scheduled check ins with a nurse and medication reviews with a pharmacist.
For Thomas Bailey, Founder of Veteran Benefits Australia, the initiative allows him to combine the amazing work he’s been doing for the veteran community with his pharmaceutical background. “I’m so proud to now be combining my passion for the veteran community and background in pharmaceuticals to offer a much-needed solution for those struggling to manage their medications.”
For veteran and nurse, Brodie Bush, the programs are a step in the right direction for Aussie veterans looking for a simplified process. “The programs offer eligible veterans a complete end to end service managed by an experienced team of nurses and doctors in collaboration with a pharmacy, simplifying the medication process with an easy-to-use system making staying on top of prescriptions simple and straightforward.”
Laura Bailey, Nurse at Veteran Benefits Australia, understands the difficulties that come with managing one’s medications, specifically when patients have a high intake. “Taking multiple medications means a greater chance of making mistakes, with each additional medication leading to a more complex management regimen, particularly as different prescriptions require intake at different times of the day or week. Patients need to be provided with appropriate medication education in a form that is easy to understand and useful to patients to encourage safe and effective medicine use and prevent mis-medication intake.”
To help with compliance and consistency, Veteran Benefits Australia is encouraging veterans to apply for the Medication Management Program. For more information or to see if they are eligible, Aussie veterans can visit www.veteranbenefitsaustralia.com.