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Posts Tagged ‘Anti-Psychotics’

Drug Abuse: Antipsychotics in Nursing Homes

Last November, in what the U.S. Department of Justice called “one of the largest health care fraud settlements in U.S. history,” Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries were fined more than $2.2 billion to resolve criminal and civil charges because of their aggressive marketing of drugs, including antipsychotics, to nursing homes, when they knew the drugs had not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as safe and effective for a general elderly population. The corporation also allegedly paid kickbacks to physicians, as well as to Omnicare, the nation’s largest long-term-care pharmacy provider. Omnicare pharmacists were recommending Johnson…

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Antipsychotics are meant primarily to help control hallucinations, delusions and other abnormal behavior in people suffering from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but they’re also given to hundreds of thousands of elderly nursing home patients.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s can prove to be huge challenges for the healthcare institutions we trust to care for our affected loved ones. Unfortunately, these are challenges many institutions meet with the over-use, abuse or improper use of drugs. The good news is that this problematic trend is being identified and resolved for many families. As recently reported by the Associated Press, the turn to drugs for nursing home patients with dementia is nothing new. Dementia has a nasty tendency to disorient patients who may grow paranoid or lash out as a result. The safest way to protect them and others…

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