National Medication Adherence Week – What is the true cost of throwing away unused medication?

Watch our video as our experts discuss the sheer scale of the waste caused by prescription non-adherence and what that the long terms effects to our health can be

It’s an issue that many of us are unaware of and the vast costs from non-adherence are felt across the entire healthcare system and impact patient well-being and patient lives.

What is the true cost of throwing away unused medication?
What is the true cost of throwing away unused medication?
A recent report states that the costs of medicine wastage at a staggering annual £300 million, at least half of which is avoidable. Whilst the cost to the NHS of people not taking their medicines properly and not getting the full benefits to their health is estimated at more than £500 million a year1. The consequences go far beyond what most patients envisage when they forget to take their pills; in the EU alone, nearly 200,000 deaths occur each year due to missed doses of medication.

Featuring in this informative video to discuss the topic is Paul O’Hanlon, (Managing Director of Omnicell, UK & Ireland and Pharmacist) and Ashley Cohen, (Pharmacist), who shed some light on why this is such a widespread problem in the hope of raising awareness during National Medication Adherence Week. They look at consequences of failing to take recommended medication, which can not only have a consequence on our health but to our wallets too.

Our experts look more in depth into the research conducted by Omnicell such as the main reasons for people forgetting to take their medication, (key examples being ‘forgetting’ to do so, the claim that it made them feel ill and due to the side effects.)They are also ready with helpful tips and professional advice on ways to remind ourselves to take our medication daily and the health implications when failing to do so.

For all this and more watch this informative video

The true cost of medication non-adherence’ report Sept 2015. Author Pat Hagan
Omnicell Medication Adherence: ComRes interviewed 2,048 British adults online between 31st July and 2nd August 2015. The sample of respondents was weighted to be nationally representative by age, gender, region and social grade.


I have meds recently prescribed that I found I am allergic to and unable to take or use.

My insurance did not cover so my out of pocket cost was high. (Over $100)

1. The pharmacy can not take the meds back or reimburse me since it is against the law.

2. I asked my doctor who prescribed the meds if I could give to him so he could give to a patient, without insurance, or who could not afford , it is against the law.

There should be a solution so medications could be donated to a clinic, etc. instead of sitting in my medicine cabinet until expiration date or I destroy.