APA Campaigns Against Overprescription of Anti-Psychotic Medication Among Elderly and Children (En)
The APA (America Psychiatric Association) has launched a campaign called Choosing Wisely to prevent doctors from overusing anti-psychotic drugs in old age homes and for children with behavioral problems.
APA aims at stopping the overuse of antipsychotic drugs, which the medics prescribe for diagnosing diseases like dementia, behavioral problems in children, and even insomnia. APA wants to also stop the over prescription of antibiotics for cold viruses and other sicknesses as they lead to the growth of “superbugs”, bacteria which are immune to any drug.
The campaign has been launched to spread public awareness among doctors and patients regarding overuse of unneeded treatments like frequent colonoscopies and ultra-sounds.
A list of questions has been prepared by the APA, that doctors and patients should raise and discuss with each-other regarding the treatments prescribed in order to avoid any kind of drug misuse. Above 50 medical groups joined the APA for this cause.
Joel Yager, a psychiatry professor at the University of Colorado located in Boulder, aided the APA in generating the list of questions.
“Physicians who overuse such medications act with good intentions and are doing what they think might help,” Yager stated in a report by USA Today.
Over consumption of anti-psychotic medicines can lead to various grave side-effects like early death, lethargy, hypertension and schizophrenia. Anti-psychotics, therefore, should not be used as the initial treatment for a disease.
It is believed that children should not be prescribed such medications as they have side effects like cardiovascular problems, weight gain and a greater risk of type 2 diabetes. Underprivileged children are more susceptible to over prescription, according to APA.
Possible overuse of anti-psychotic medications among children covered by Medicaid is being investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, according to a The Wall Street Journal report published last month.
A drop of 9 percent in prescriptions among old people in nursing homes was observed after a campaign was launched by government agencies, medical providers along with the public for this cause.
“This is a way to get the message out to the health community at large,” Yager stated, regarding the ‘Choosing Wisely’ campaign.