Needs Analysis for Change Essay

Needs Analysis for Change Essay


Summary of the Chosen Economic Issue

The rising cost of prescription drugs is a pressing economic issue that significantly affects the elderly population, my work, my organization, my colleagues, and the community. As a healthcare professional, I witness firsthand the detrimental effects of escalating medication prices on older individuals. The elderly often require multiple medications for managing chronic conditions, and the financial burden becomes an obstacle to accessing these essential treatments (Makurvet, 2021). Within my organization, the rising cost of prescription drugs poses challenges in budgeting and resource allocation, potentially compromising the quality of care provided to elderly patients. Similarly, my colleagues face difficulties ensuring that elderly patients can afford and adhere to their prescribed medications. In the community, the financial strain of expensive prescription drugs adversely impacts the elderly, compromising access to necessary healthcare and medication adherence. This, in turn, can result in worsening health outcomes, increased hospitalizations, and reduced overall well-being for the elderly.

The Rationale for Pursuing the Economic Health Issue

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The rationale for pursuing the issue of rising prescription drug costs, specifically for the elderly population, is grounded in the significant impact it has on their health and well-being. The elderly often rely on multiple medications for managing chronic conditions but struggle with affordability (Gast & Mathes, 2019).  The identified gap contributing to this issue is the lack of price transparency in the pharmaceutical industry, which results in high drug prices and limited competition. Addressing this gap is crucial for promoting price transparency, competition, and access to affordable medications for the elderly population.

Socioeconomic Disparities Affecting the Elderly Population Secondary to the Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs

The impact of rising prescription drug costs on the elderly population reveals socioeconomic and diversity disparities within this specific group. Research indicates that elderly individuals from lower socioeconomic backgrounds often face greater challenges affording necessary medications, exacerbating health inequalities (Ghosh et al., 2019). Furthermore, racial and ethnic minorities among the elderly population may experience compounded effects due to existing disparities in healthcare access and resources. For example, a study by Xie et al. (2020) found that racial and ethnic disparities persist in prescription drug affordability and adherence among older adults. These disparities underscore the need to address the economic issue of rising drug costs to ensure equitable access to affordable medications for all elderly individuals, regardless of their socioeconomic status or background.

Findings of Evidence-Based or Scholarly Sources

The evidence-based and scholarly sources highlight the urgent need to address the issue of rising prescription drug costs and provide insights into potential change or implementation plans to mitigate its impact on the elderly population.

1 According to Bhatt, 2022, The health of the American populace is significantly influenced by pharmaceutical firms. The high expense of prescription medications may be detrimental to this nation’s elderly population. Because of these high costs, there may be non-compliance and non-adherence.

  1. According to Ramsay and William (2021), older persons who skip recommended medication dosages or do not fill prescriptions because they cannot afford to do so have lower health outcomes than those who stick to their medication schedule. Out of 11 high-income nations, Americans over 65 had the greatest percentage of people who do not take prescription medications because of the cost. The estimated two out of every three older Americans who live with at least two chronic diseases are more acutely aware of this financial burden.
  2. According to Brierly (2020), The West Health Policy Centre estimates that approximately 1.1 million Medicare beneficiaries may pass away during the following ten years as a result of their inability to pay for their prescription drugs. A leading cause of death in the U.S., ahead of diabetes, influenza, pneumonia, and kidney disease, researchers predict that cost-related non-adherence to drug therapy will result in the premature deaths of 112,000 beneficiaries a year if current drug pricing trends and associated cost-sharing continue.
  3. According to Linda Phillips (2019), the Age-related financial well-being of older persons is undoubtedly impacted by drug prices. Though they make up just 15% of the U.S. population on average, people 65 and older use 34% of all prescription medicines. The usage of many medications by a single person is an issue that is not taken into account in the cost discussion.

‌These evidence-based findings collectively emphasize the importance of implementing change, such as policy interventions, comprehensive medication management programs, and increased transparency, to address the economic issue of rising prescription drug costs and improve medication affordability and adherence for the elderly population.

The Proposed Change

The proposed change or implementation plan to address the rising prescription drug costs among the elderly population holds several predicted outcomes and opportunities for economic growth.

  1. Improved Medication Adherence: By reducing the financial burden of prescription drugs, the proposed plan can enhance medication adherence among the elderly population. Improved adherence leads to better health outcomes, reduced hospitalizations, and lower healthcare costs (Gast & Mathes, 2019). This, in turn, contributes to economic growth by minimizing unnecessary healthcare expenditures.
  2. Increased Access to Essential Medications: The implementation plan aims to ensure equitable access to affordable medications for the elderly. By addressing affordability barriers, more older adults will have access to the medications they need to manage their chronic conditions. This increased access can result in better disease management, improved quality of life, and reduced healthcare costs associated with preventable complications.
  3. Cost Savings for Individuals and Healthcare Systems: Lower prescription drug costs translate into direct cost savings for individuals, particularly the elderly population on fixed incomes. This can free up financial resources for other essential needs and improve their economic well-being. Furthermore, reduced healthcare costs associated with improved medication adherence and disease management can alleviate the financial burden on healthcare systems, leading to long-term economic benefits.
  4. Innovation and Investment Opportunities: Addressing the economic issue of rising drug costs creates opportunities for innovation and investment in the healthcare sector. This can include the development of new pricing models, increased competition in the pharmaceutical industry, and the advancement of technology to improve medication affordability and access. Such innovation and investments can stimulate economic growth, create jobs, and drive positive change in the healthcare industry.


The rising cost of prescription drugs is a pressing healthcare economic issue with significant implications for the elderly population. This assignment highlighted the impact of this issue on individuals, colleagues, and the community, emphasizing the need for change. By addressing the identified gaps, such as the lack of price transparency and competition, and implementing strategies to improve medication affordability and access, we can enhance the well-being of the elderly population. These efforts will lead to improved medication adherence, increased economic stability for individuals, and opportunities for economic growth in the healthcare sector. Addressing the issue of rising prescription drug costs is vital for promoting equitable access to affordable medications and improving health outcomes among the elderly population.



Bhatt, P. (2022). The Impact of Rising Prescription Drug Costs on the Elderly in the United States. Master of Public Health Capstone Presentations.

Gast, A., & Mathes, T. (2019). Medication adherence influencing factors—an (updated) overview of systematic reviews. Systematic Reviews8, 1–17.

Ghosh, A., Simon, K., & Sommers, B. D. (2019). The effect of health insurance on prescription drug use among low-income adults: evidence from recent Medicaid expansions. Journal of Health Economics, 63, 64–80.

Makurvet, F. D. (2021). Biologics vs. small molecules: Drug costs and patient access. Medicine in Drug Discovery9, 100075.

Xie, Z., St Clair, P., Goldman, D. P., & Joyce, G. (2019). Racial and ethnic disparities in medication adherence among privately insured patients in the United States. PloS One14(2), e0212117.

Linda Phillips. (2019, February 7). Drug costs impact the financial well-being of older adults. The Hill.

Brierly, A. (2020, November 19). New Study Predicts More Than 1.1 million Deaths Among Medicare Recipients Due to the Inability to Afford Their Medications –

Ramsay, C., & Williams, R. (2021, September 30). Medicare Patients Pay More for Drugs Than Older Adults in Other Countries; Congress Has an Opportunity to Move Forward [Review of Medicare Patients Pay More for Drugs Than Older Adults in Other Countries; Congress Has an Opportunity to Move Forward]. The Commonwealth Fund.


Be sure to address each main point. Review the assessment instructions and scoring guide, including performance-level descriptions for each criterion, to ensure you understand the work you will be asked to complete and how it will be assessed. In addition, note the requirements for document format and length and for supporting evidence.

Overall, you will be assessed on the following criteria:

Summarize your chosen economic issue and its impact on your work, organization, colleagues, and community.

Reiterate your rationale for pursuing this issue, as well as the gap contributing to it that you identified in your previous assessment.

Identify any socioeconomic or diversity disparities that exist with how your chosen economic issue impacts any particular groups or populations.

Use at least one piece of evidence to support this disparity (public health data, aggregated data from an organization, or other scholarly resources).

Explain the findings of evidence-based or scholarly sources regarding the need to address your chosen issue and pursue potential change or implementation plans.

For example, if your implementation plan includes the need for increased staffing, you might want to research errors or patient falls that occurred as a result of high patient and low staff ratio in the literature.

Use at least four evidence-based or scholarly sources that are relevant to your chosen topic to support your explanation.

Explain the predicted outcomes and opportunities for growth as the result of the proposed change or implementation plan.

Outcomes and opportunities for growth should focus on economic considerations.

Convey purpose, in an appropriate tone and style, incorporating supporting evidence and adhering to organizational, professional, and scholarly writing standards.

Additional Requirements

Length of Submission: 3–5 double-spaced pages.

Number of References: Cite at least four sources of evidence to support your identification of the gap. This could be public health data, a peer-reviewed journal article, or another scholarly source.

APA formatting: Titles, headings, resources, and citations are formatted according to the current APA style.

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