Prescription-filling rates for key medications in Veterans Affairs patients after coronary artery bypass grafting

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Abstract

Purpose.

The six-month prescription-filling rates for key secondary-prevention drugs in Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) patients who had undergone coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) were studied.

Methods.

Patient records for elective CABG from April 2000 through March 2002 (divided into four six-month periods) were analyzed. The study population included 8925 CABG-only patients surviving to hospital discharge. For each six-month period and in aggregate, the primary study endpoint was the six-month prescription-filling rate.

Results.

Across the four six-month periods, prescription-filling rates increased for all categories of medications studied. There were modest progressive increases for lipid-lowering agents, statins, β-blockers, angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors, and angiotensin-receptor blockers. The antithrombotic-filling rate averaged 88.5%. Filling rates for aspirin were much higher than for aspirin alternatives.

Conclusion.

Prescription-filling rates for post-CABG medications in VA facilities were generally high and suggested compliance with guidelines for the prevention of cardiovascular events.

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