Q&A with Helen Omuya: Improving Life for Older Veterans Through Deprescribing InterventionsJune 26, 2023
Helen Omuya is working with the Department of Veterans Affairs health system on creating tools that enable health care providers to help patients safely go off medications.
The number of medications prescribed to older adults for various health complaints can sometimes accumulate to daunting levels over time and potentially harm their health and quality of life. In her research, Helen Omuya, a PhD candidate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, spoke with one patient who was taking 32 medications every day.
Omuya received a 2023 PhRMA Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship in Value Assessment-Health Outcomes Research for her work with the Department of Veterans Affairs health system on creating tools that enable health care providers to help patients safely go off medications.
“It’s been a wonderful partnership,” Omuya said. “One of the reasons it has worked with the VA system is they are the ones providing the medication and the hospital care if there are any untoward side effects from the medications. They are really vested in reducing costs and also making sure their veterans enjoy what we call ‘whole health.’”
The goal is for this model to be adopted by other VA sites and add to the body of evidence on the benefits of deprescribing.
Watch this video to learn about Omuya and her research.