“We Are Detectives” – Appropriate Use of Antipsychotics in LTC

In 2013, Alberta Health Services (AHS) funded a pilot project that focused on the use of antipsychotics in long-term care facilities. Starting with 11 early-adopter sites, the Appropriate Use of Antipsychotics in Long-Term Care Project has now been implemented in all of the 170 long-term sites across the province. The results have been very positive for all involved – residents, families, and staff. Click here to explore the AUA Toolkit, where you can find news and resources relating to the AUA project.

Why Does Inappropriate Prescribing Exist?

Antibiotic resistance is becoming a growing concern. One need only consider the strain of bacteria that contains genes which show no effect to colisitin, the “antibiotic of last resort,” to recognize the threat that exists. According to John Gums, Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs and Professor of Pharmacy and Medicine at the University of Florida, there are a number of reasons that antibiotic resistance has occurred, one of which is inappropriate prescribing. While the solution to this situation is clear – doctors need to stop prescribing so many antibiotics – there are other factors at work. As Gums explains:

I believe there are two reasons inappropriate prescribing is so hard to curb. First, there is a philosophical disconnect between the data about antibiotic resistance and what drives prescriber behavior. The second is that physicians may bend to patient demand for antibiotics, even if the physician knows it won’t help or isn’t really needed.

Click here to read the article.