Nearly All Nursing Homes Fail Federal Rules on Anti-Psychotics

Cheryl Clark, July 13, 2012

The improper use of anti-psychotic drugs in nursing homes is much worse than previously reported, according to another report in a series on the topic from the federal Office of Inspector General, which says that 99.5% of sampled records fail to meet all federal requirements.

"Overall, 373 of the 375 records reviewed for elderly nursing facility residents receiving atypical antipsychotic drugs during the first six months of 2007 lacked evidence" that they met requirements for resident assessments and care plans, the report says.

Additionally, nearly half (48%) of these patients' records did not meet two or more federal requirements.

The issue has ramifications for the entire healthcare industry because use of anti-psychotic drugs is associated with a higher rate of death in patients living in skilled nursing facilities, who are frequently readmitted to hospitals.

The report sats that increased scrutiny of the failure by state licensing inspectors on behalf of the federal government may result in findings of immediate jeopardy declarations that require immediate corrective action "because of actual or potential serious injury, harm, impairment, or death to a resident."

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