Nursing home resident advocates applaud CMS antipsychotic initiative

Share this article:

Nursing home resident advocates applauded federal action on the issue of using antipsychotics to treat elderly nursing home residents with dementia.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services launched its  “National Initiative to Improve Behavioral Health & Reduce the Use of Antipsychotic Medications in Nursing Home Residents” on Thursday, a move hailed by aging services advocates. The initiative aims to raise awareness of antipsychotic misuse, improve regulatory oversight and train nursing home workers on non-drug treatments for aggressive and agitated dementia behaviors.

When prescribed inappropriately, resident advocates have argued, antipsychotics can increase the risk of death for nursing home residents with dementia. They say increased nursing home staffing levels and extra training, among other measures, can help curb the use of such drugs. Groups such as the American Health Care Association have also made antipsychotic reduction a quality measurement goal.

“Nursing home staff who take the time to understand what residents are communicating with their behavior can provide care to their residents without using chemical restraints,” Claire Curry, legal director at the Legal Aid Justice Center in Charlottesville, VA, said in a statement.

Click here for more information about CMS' initiative.

Share this article:

More in News

Profile: AHCA's money player

Profile: AHCA's money player

If there's a prevailing theme around the hours American Health Care Association senior fellow Elise Smith keeps, it's that they are constant.

Residents cheer tractor parade

Residents cheer tractor parade

Many residents of the Oskaloosa Care Center in southern Iowa used to be farmers. They're reminded of their past by the cornfield next to the nursing home — and, once ...

No need for injury

No need for injury

Due to dynamic factors in moving residents, facilities must invest wisely in lifts, slings and batteries to make sure workers stay safe while performing transfers