Home > Psychotropic medications and the transition into care: a national data linkage study.

Maguire, Aideen and Hughes, Carmel M and Cardwell, Chris and O'Reilly, Dermot (2013) Psychotropic medications and the transition into care: a national data linkage study. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society , 61 , pp. 215-221.

Objectives
To determine whether excessive and often inappropriate or dangerous psychotropic drug dispensing to older adults is unique to care homes or is a continuation of community treatment.

Design
Population-based data-linkage study using prescription drug information.

Setting
Northern Ireland's national prescribing database and care home information from the national inspectorate.

Participants
Two hundred fifty thousand six hundred seventeen individuals aged 65 and older.

Measurements
Prescription information was extracted for all psychotropic drugs included in the British National Formulary (BNF) categories 4.1.1, 4.1.2, and 4.2.2 (hypnotics, anxiolytics, and antipsychotics) dispensed over the study period. Repeated cross-sectional analysis was used to monitor changes in psychotropic drug dispensing over time.

Results
Psychotropic drug use was higher in care homes than the community; 20.3% of those in care homes were dispensed an antipsychotic in January 2009, compared with 1.1% of those in the community. People who entered care had higher use of psychotropic medications before entry than those who did not enter care, but this increased sharply in the month of admission and continued to rise. Antipsychotic drug dispensing increased from 8.2% before entry to 18.6% after entering care (risk ratio (RR) = 2.26, 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.96–2.59) and hypnotic drug dispensing from 14.8% to 26.3% (RR=1.78, 95% CI=1.61–1.96).

Conclusion
A continuation of high use before entry cannot wholly explain the higher dispensing of psychotropic drugs to individuals in care homes. Although drug dispensing is high in older people in the community, it increases dramatically


Item Type:Article
Date:2013
Page Range:pp. 215-221
Volume:61
EndNote:View
Subjects:VA Geographic area > Europe > Northern Ireland
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Patient care management
T Demographic characteristics > Elderly / Older person
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health care programme or facility
E Concepts in biomedical areas > Substance by legal status > Prescription drug (medicine / medication)
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Care by type of problem > Medical care

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