Senators from both parties joined with the Chairman of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, Sen. Herb Kohl, D-Wis., to propose legislation to combat the costly and inappropriate – yet widespread – use of antipsychotic drugs in nursing homes.
Joining with Sen. Kohl, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., offered the amendment to S. 3187, the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act.
It will require the Health and Human Services Secretary to issue standardized protocols for obtaining informed consent, or authorization from patients or their designated health care agents or legal representatives, acknowledging possible risks and side effects associated with the antipsychotic, as well as alternative treatment options, before administering the drug for off-label use.
“The overuse of antipsychotics is a common and well-recognized problem that puts frail elders at risk and costs taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars each year,” Kohl said.
“We need a new policy that helps to ensure that these drugs are being appropriately used to treat people with mental illnesses, not used to curb behavioral symptoms of Alzheimer’s or other dementias.”
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Senators Want Antipsychotic Drug Use Better Controlled in Nursing Homes