Introduction

Many roles are assigned to health professionals; the daily fulfillment of these roles in an exemplary fashion is the hallmark of health professional practice and delivery of health care to patients in the United States. Patients are thus well served, and fellow health professionals share knowledge and expertise specific to their profession. Despite this, many problems remain in the U.S. health care system; there are 46 million uninsured individuals in the United States, representing between 16% and 17% of the population. Many more in our midst are underinsured. They may have coverage after a fashion, but the deductibles, co-pays, and monthly payments for insurance create an economic dilemma for individuals each time they seek care or pay premiums. According to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, National Health Expenditure data, well over $2.2 trillion was spent on health care in the United States during 2007 amounting to $7,400 per person, some of it no doubt unnecessarily so.1

The use of medications in the health care system provides enormous help to many; lives are saved or enhanced, and lifespans are lengthened. Many other uses of medications lead to significant side effects, worsening states of health, and premature deaths. So, how to separate these disparate pictures of drug use outcomes? You, within your practices and within your networks in the health workplace, can help to promote the former and diminish the latter. The authors of the chapters in this book have written sterling chapters that can empower you to positively influence medication use.

Blood Pressure Health

Blood Pressure Health

Your heart pumps blood throughout your body using a network of tubing called arteries and capillaries which return the blood back to your heart via your veins. Blood pressure is the force of the blood pushing against the walls of your arteries as your heart beats.Learn more...

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