October 29, 2005

Program to Reduce Child Psychiatric Drug Use

In January of 2006, an new program will be launched in the eastern Tennessee area to reduce the use of psychiatric drugs by children. The program will be a cooperative effort between TennCare (Tennessee state health care program), Magellan Behavioral Health, and the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy. Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in the use psychotropic drugs to treat children with conduct disorders, mainly depression and ADHD. Between 1996 and 2001, new users of antipsychotics between the ages of 2-18 have nearly doubled and many in the field think that this level of use is unnecessary and potentially harmful to the patients. Antipsychotics can have debilitating side effects and their use in children has not been well studied. The main focus of the program is to educate physicians on the best way to treat children. Magellan will provide educational materials and the University of Tennessee will measure the effectiveness of the program. After eight months TennCare will decide whether the program should be expanded to the rest of the state. If it is successful, this new approach could be adopted by other states to treat children with a variety of diseases of the brain.

TennCare will try to reduce psychiatric drug use in childrenSouthern Standard. Press Release Oct. 29, 2005 www.southernstandard.net

Related News Blogs:
Is U.S. Overprescribing to Children
FDA Warning - Child Antidepressant Use
Treatment of Adolescent and Child Schizophrenia
Marijuana - Childhood Psych Problems Soar in UK


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