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Innappropriate drug prescriptions wasting millions, raising health risks
Date:3/4/2009

ic medications is surging. In 2002 these drugs constituted more than 7 percent of the expenditures for all Medicaid programs nationally. In Oregon, the medications represented nearly 30 percent of all outpatient fee-for-service drug expenditures in 2006.

During 2006, the study found, the Oregon Medicaid program spent about $2.5 million for chronic, subtherapeutic use of a single antipsychotic drug in adult patients.

Based on this, the researchers concluded that "a statewide initiative to provide guidance regarding the administration of antipsychotic medication could be beneficial."

The study was done in Oregon, Hartung said, but is probably a reflection of trends across the nation.

The researchers wrote in their report that "states wishing to reduce costs and improve the quality of use for atypical antipsychotic medications should examine prescribing patterns to ensure that these drugs are prescribed within acceptable practice limits, and are not used for off-label uses when other approaches may be more appropriate and less expensive."


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Contact: Daniel Hartung
hartungd@ohsu.edu
503-494-4720
Oregon State University
Source:Eurekalert

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