18, May, 2017
Issaquah Nursing and Rehabilitation is proud to be awarded the Award of Excellence: Post-Acute Care by Qualis Health Washington for their project, "Reducing Antipsychotic Use in Dementia Patients". From January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2016, they were able to reduce the number of dementia patients on antipsychotic drugs from 33.9% to 3.5%.
When staff at Issaquah Nursing and Rehabilitation Center identified that 33.9 percent of their dementia patients were taking antipsychotic drugs that were not serving their prescribed purpose, they determined that such unnecessary drugs should be eliminated. Use of antipsychotics in the elderly can cause an increase in adverse events, including falls resulting in fractures, decreased overall health, hospitalizations, and death. They are also costly: in 2012, Medicare Part D plans paid approximately $363 million for antipsychotic drugs used by enrollees age 66 and older with dementia. In response to these factors, Issaquah staff initiated a project on January 1, 2015, to reduce the use of antipsychotic medications administered to dementia patients to less than 10 percent by December 31, 2016. Stakeholder education formed the core of this effort: staff distributed the American Health Care Association (AHCA) consumer fact sheet about antipsychotic use to families; facilitated staff training, including videos on non-pharmacologic interventions for behaviors; and initiated physician training, incorporating federal regulatory guidance, facility standards, and non-pharmacologic interventions. As a result of these efforts, antipsychotic use at the facility decreased from 33.9 to 3.5 percent