[A version of this item appears in: Dementia: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWHT), Volume 1 Issue 12, July 2011].
The Dementia Action Alliance launched a call to action on the use of antipsychotic drugs for people with dementia on June 9th 2011.
The aim is to try to ensure that people with dementia and receiving antipsychotic drugs should be given a clinical review by their doctor to ensure that their care is compliant with best practice and guidelines and to check that the alternatives to this medication are considered. This should be the case, without exception, by late March 2012.
Use of antipsychotic drugs has serious side effects for people with dementia, resulting in mobility problems, sedation and frequently death, particularly if used for longer than 12 weeks.
Eight groups, including people with dementia and their carers, GPs, leaders in care homes and pharmacists, will be asked to sign up to commitments outlining how they intend to play their role in ensuring change happens.
The Dementia Action Alliance has produced best practice guidance for people with dementia and carers and health and social care professionals on the use of antipsychotics:
Dementia Action Alliance (2011). The right prescription: a call to action on the use of antipsychotic medication.
See also the Alzheimer’s Society web page on this subject. The Alzheimer’s Society itself produces two leaflets: