Alzheimer’s Patients Beware and Families Be Aware

Few families these days are not touched by issues relating caring for our aging population. While we as a society struggle to find a cure or at least how to better deal with heart wrenching issues related to people we love, we need to keep in mind that we are our families best advocates. The following story reinforces the need to know exactly what drugs are being administered to our family and friends in nursing homes and advanced care facilities.

CMS: Over 17% of nursing-home patients had antipsychotics doses exceeding recommendations.

The Baton Rouge (LA) Advocate (8/29, Couvillion) reports, “A national initiative launched at the end of May has set an ambitious goal of reducing the use of antipsychotic drugs for nursing home residents by 15 percent by the end of this year. It's called the 'Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes' and is being led by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).” In 2010, according to CMS data, “more than 17 percent of nursing-home patients had daily doses of antipsychotic drugs exceeding recommended levels, according to a CMS news release.”