Industry balks at drug report

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Gifford: SNFs deserve credit for their antipsychotic use reductions.
Gifford: SNFs deserve credit for their antipsychotic use reductions.

Skilled nursing leaders criticized a Human Rights Watch report on antipsychotics in February.

The report, “‘They Want Docile': How Nursing Homes in the United States Overmedicate People with Dementia,” tracked nursing homes using antipsychotics for dementia. It found 179,000 U.S. nursing home residents are given antipsychotic drugs without an appropriate diagnosis each week.

But that's not the whole story, said American Health Care Association SVP David Gifford, M.D. Providers “have worked tirelessly to safely reduce the unnecessary use of antipsychotic medications over the last six years,” he said. The report does little to highlight the many providers who made at least a 30% reduction, he added.