GAO: Expand Efforts to Curb Antipsychotic Use outside of Nursing Homes

March 13, 2015 | Aging Services Risk Management


​The proportion of individuals with dementia who receive antipsychotic drugs is more than twice as high outside of nursing homes as within nursing homes, and the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) should take a more active role in reducing such usage, according to a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). Based on 2012 data, about 6.1% of Medicare beneficiaries with dementia who spent at least 100 days in a nursing home received antipsychotic medications, while 13.9% of dementia patients outside of nursing home received these medications. Data reported in February indicated that antipsychotic use in nursing homes was down nearly 20% from 2011 to 2014 (see the February 27, 2015, Issues in Continuing Care Risk Management).

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