The conversation about rethinking medication use is getting more interesting. While important strides are being made to reduce antipsychotic use, the issue is actually only one piece in a puzzle that has even larger impact.
In 2014, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) awarded The Eden Alternative grant dollars to support Oklahoma’s reduction of antipsychotic drug use through the delivery of Dementia Beyond Drugs training.
USA Today reports that about 61% of all nursing homes got lower quality-of-care scores as a result of the new CMS 5-Star changes. About 28% of nursing homes dropped one star in their overall ratings, including more than 1,200 that lost coveted five-star status. The biggest changes are the usage rate of antipsychotics is now a factor in the rating along with more difficult quality and staffing level measures.
Last week, someone asked me to clarify some things about our Dementia Beyond Drugs training that made me realize that there are still some misconceptions floating around out there regarding the vision behind it. I’d like to share some of my thoughts on this, while noting that Dr. Al Power, the award-winning author of the book by the same name, may have a few of his own.