What Are Your Deprescribing Goals?

Jun 24, 2022 | WELLhood Blogs | 5 comments

Wait…you don’t have one? That may be okay if you do not take any medications or perhaps only take a couple.

But do you or someone you know take a few or more, or perhaps, many more than a few?

You may want to consider deprescribing goals.

What is Deprescribing?

First, it is probably best to define deprescribing which is the stopping, reducing, or switching to a safer medication. This is important, especially for older adults, as medications that have been a great benefit over the years may become unnecessary or harmful causing side effects, falls, hospitalizations, or just not feeling well. When we deprescribe to optimize medications, it means that only medications that are needed and helpful are taken.

Deprescribing Goals:

So let me ask again…what are your deprescribing goals? I do love “Deprescribe to optimize”- but what other words come to mind instead of optimize?

  • Deprescribe to feel better.
  • Deprescribe to reduce falls.
  • Deprescribe to think clearer.
  • Deprescribe to stop feeling dizzy.
  • Deprescribe to enjoy time with your family.
  • Deprescribe to take less medications (and not add on anymore).
  • Deprescribe to save money for something other than medications.
  • Deprescribe to travel.
  • Deprescribe to __________ .

Setting a deprescribing goal can help to set the path to talking with your health care providers about the number of medications you take and if you need them all? Are any unnecessary or causing side effects, or falls? Ask about all medications prescription and non-prescription products you take including vitamins, supplements, and herbal products.

How Do I Make This Happen?

Use the forms under templates to write your medication list, review questions to ask at your next health visit, and develop a deprescribing plan with your providers. Be certain to add your goals, that you determined are important to you, to the conversation.

Know that deprescribing is a process and not a one time idea or conversation. Deprescribing takes time, patience, and follow-up for best outcomes to your achieving your deprescribing goal.

What else is available on this website?

MedStrong: Shed Your Meds for a Better, Healthier You is available for pre-orders. Take a look at this valuable read that takes you through the process of aging well through deprescribing. Sign up to receive blogs direct to your email and check out the podcasts and resources available on the website. Share your deprescribing story and goals to help others on their deprescribing journey. Stay proactive with your health -but most of all stay WISE & WELL!


  1. Eboni P.

    Enjoyed reading this blog! As a young pharmacy intern, one of the reasons I wanted to become a pharmacist was because of my grandmother who’s taken so many medications throughout the years. Even though she has deprescribed from some she still has quite a few. My goal is to eventually become apart of her taking even less medications in the future through my knowledge obtained from pharmacy school! #MedStrong!

  2. Rohan

    Really enjoyed this read, along with the idea of deprescribing. I agree, many people using multiple medications daily may not need it and don’t realize that. My goal would be to continuously check in on patients and understand their necessities for the medications being prescribed and taken and depending on them, try deprescribing medications they may not any longer.

  3. Meghan McGonagle

    I think this is a great topic that is not discussed enough! Many people, especially those who are older, take lots of medications and they can often be a financial burden for these people. Deprescribing can not only be more beneficial to patient health, but it can also be beneficial towards patient finances. I love that you are bringing this topic into the spotlight because I believe that the idea of stopping a med does not even occur to many people, but I think if the topic was more widespread, many people would “shed their meds!”

  4. mckenna gosselin

    I think deprescribing is a key factor to a healthier future. From the first week of pharmacy school, the “snowball effect” of prescriptions stuck with me. We all want to feel our best and medicine is tool to help facilitate that however, when one medication leads to an individual being placed onto another, and another and so on… are we really solving a problem? It is so important that as pharmacists we educate our patients about side effects of medications. Implementing a more in depth patient medication review is necessary to be able to deprescribe. Providers and pharmacists can work together to determine pre-exisitng patient conditions and prioritize which medications are most beneficial to the patient’s health. Is there a single medication that could be substituted in place of two others? Is there an OTC product that a patient can take to help with side effects rather than a prescription? These are questions to consider. Prescription medications are meant to help improve our lives, not take over it. Deprescribing is so important and I am so glad that you are able to share your more in depth and academic thoughts with the world!

  5. Mina Fawaz

    Enjoyed reading this blog on the importance of Deprescribing! As a future pharmacist I agree with the fact that deprescribing in older adults is important as it ensures no harm or risk pertains to them for medications that no longer have use or purpose in there day to day routine. In the future, I hope to be consistent on patients medications and ensure that their current regimen is effective and if needed, deprescribe medications that are no longer effective for the patient.

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