Reducing Off-Label Use of Antipsychotics in Nursing Homes
Numerous studies have demonstrated serious health risks associated with atypical use of antipsychotic medication in older adults with dementia.
In September 2012, Mass Senior Care Foundation, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, launched a year-long initiative to safely reduce the atypical use of anti-psychotic medication in treating patients with dementia. Learn more about the Statewide Initiative to Safely Reduce the Off-Label Use of Antipsychotics, through which over 100 Massachusetts nursing facilities are using the OASIS curriculum, a non-pharmacological approach that helps staff develop and employ strategies to improve quality of life for residents.
This initiative builds on the success of the 2011-12, eleven facility OASIS pilot project, funded by the Commonwealth Corporation, which demonstrated positive outcomes and statistically significant declines in the proportion of residents prescribed antipsychotic medications.
Read the OASIS pilot report.
September 2012 - 2013 OASIS Curriculum
OASIS Training Materials
Director of Clinical Quality Laurie Herndon and Dr. Susan Wehry,
Commissioner of the Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living in Vermont, provide leadership and direction for this important pilot program.
This Massachusetts program to reduce off label use was featured in Provider Magazine, published by the American Health Care Association. Click here to see a copy of the article.
Did you know that nearly 60% of nursing facility residents received nine or more different medications during a seven-day assessment period? Frail elders with complex health problems may need multiple medications to optimize their medical and functional status. However, as the number of medications increases, so do the risks of errors and potentially harmful drug interactions.
To minimize those risks, the Massachusetts Senior Care Foundation has joined with the Massachusetts Coalition for the Prevention of Medical Errors and Masspro in a collaboration to reduce medication errors in nursing facilities.
This collaboration has led to the development of a 200-page Safe Medication Practices Workbook which provides the essential tools needed by senior care professionals to improve medication management systems and reduce the incidence of medication errors and resident harm. Funding and support for this work comes from the Department of Public Health’s Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety and Medical Error Reduction.