Are Today’s Doctors Prescribing Drugs Too Readily?

pharmacy point of saleMobile pharmacy point of sale systems make it easier than ever for consumers to order and pay for prescription drugs. This raises important questions, including, is this always a good thing? With prescriptions easily and readily available, some believe that doctors are doling out medications too liberally — especially when it comes to American children. “More than 10,000 American toddlers 2 or 3 years old are being medicated for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder outside established pediatric guidelines,” The New York Times reported on May 16.

 

Do 10,000 Toddlers Really Need To Be On Ritalin?

According to The American Academy of Pediatrics, prescription drugs should be the last resort for children ages 4 to 6 with ADHD. “Guidelines do not even address a diagnosis in children below age 4,” The New York Timescontinues. Dr. Lawrence H. Diller tells Today that, although Americans account for just 4% of the global population, they also use 70% of the world’s Ritalin and Adderall. What, if anything, explains these shocking figures?

For children ages 4 to 6, doctors do recommend ADHD medications, if all else fails. Experts add that low-income families typically do not have the means to afford some of the better alternatives, such as special educational programs and parent-behavior training. Healthcare professionals add that children under age 4 may simply be acting like toddlers — and there is no concrete evidence, as of it stands, to suggest that ADHD medications work for young children (or that they are safe!).

Are Convenient Mobile Applications To Blame?

Are doctors prescribing too much Adderall and Ritalin, particularly to toddlers and young children? Doctors largely agree; the answer is yes. Even so, experts add that technology improvements and mobile pharmacy point of sale systems — or POS systems — are not to blame. In fact, this technology may help grant patients with limited mobility and/or transportation, such as aging Americans, to easily order prescriptions and transfer prescriptions to closer locations, if necessary.

Technology improvements always come with ups and downs. Still, doctors do not blame easy-to-access mobile POS software for the spike in toddlers’ Ritalin and Adderall prescriptions. If anything, doctors add, the technology gets important medicines to people who truly need it.

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