Adverse Outcomes Associated with Psychotropic Medication Usage in Nursing Homes
The elderly population is growing in nursing homes (NHs), with an estimated 3 million seniors to be residing in NH facilities by year 2030. Many of these seniors are potentially at risk for falls or infections. NH residents with Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia are also increasing, and they are vulnerable to the adverse effects of medications. Psychotropics are overused in NHs, with approximately half to two thirds of residents receiving one or more psychotropics. Many negative
... s. Many negative health outcomes, e.g. falls and infections, have been associated with their use. The usage of psychotropic medications among NH residents has been a concern and topic of scrutiny for nearly three decades. In 1986, the Institute of Medicine published a landmark report that identified the overuse of psychotropic medications in NHs. The following year, the federal government passed the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act that included reform legislation to address psychotropic drug overuse. Since then, additional policies and initiatives have endeavored to rectify the problem, and scientists have conducted research regarding psychotropics and negative health outcomes. However, newer research within the last decade and at a national level is lacking. Therefore, this dissertation explores the association of psychotropic medications with falls and infections among NH residents using a national dataset, and this document is organized into five chapters. The first chapter discusses the background, significance, and current challenges surrounding psychotropic medication use in NHs. The second chapter delineates the search of the literature and relevant findings. The third chapter describes the methodology upon which this analytics of this dissertation was conducted. The fourth chapter outlines the results from the analyses. Lastly, the fifth chapter provides a synthesis and discussion of the findings and recommendations for health policy, practice, and future research.