3/17/2014 – Behavior therapies better than antipsychotics for dementia patients, nurses say

Mar 17, 2014 Comments Off by

More than 20 percent of American nursing home residents with Alzheimer’s-related illness are on antipsychotic medications, despite the fact that this is an off-label use for the drugs and that dementia patients who take them are more likely to be hospitalized or to die. Medicaid spends more on this class of drugs than any other — including antibiotics, AIDS drugs or medicines to treat high blood pressure.

Ecumen, a Minnesota care organization, used behavior modification and other alternative techniques to reduce the use of antipsychotic drugs by 98 percent in 1,200 patients across its 16 nursing homes, saving $200,000 to $350,000 a month in Medicare and Medicaid spending on the medications and making patients more alert and active.

Read the full article at The Washington Post.

Longevity News 2014, mind

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