Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Patients at care homes get pills they don’t need

From the Belfast Telegraph:
Over half of nursing home patients in Northern Ireland are prescribed inappropriate drugs for sedation when there is no medical need, research claimed today.

The study launched at the British Pharmaceutical Conference (BPC) in Manchester, found some 51% of nursing home patients are taking inappropriate psychoactive drugs.

The BPC said psychotropic medications have historically been used in nursing homes to sedate residents with no clinical need, including night-time sedation.

A psychoactive drug, or psychotropic substance, acts mainly on the central nervous system where it alters brain function, resulting in temporary changes in perception, mood, consciousness and behaviour.

Two pharmacy studies in Northern Ireland have focused on these drugs after the implementation of an adapted US model of pharmaceutical care, called The Fleetwood Northern Ireland Model. It takes a wider look at care in a nursing home setting and the impact of direct intervention from pharmacists. ...more

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