A recent study performed by RiskAnalytica and funded by the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement has found that reducing and discontinuing the use of antipsychotic drugs in long term care facilities could save Canada $6.7 billion in reduced healthcare costs over a thirty-year period. The study projected savings from decreased drug spending as well as fewer falls, emergency room visits, and hospitalizations. All of these measures were significantly reduced in 56 long term care facilities that participated in an antipsychotic reduction collaborative. If the collaborative was spread throughout Canada, the study’s authors found that 448 million less antipsychotic prescriptions would be written by 2046, leading to millions of fewer falls and hundreds of thousands of fewer hospital trips.
Here’s hoping Canada can spread its program of reducing antipsychotics, improving dementia care, AND saving some serious money. And here’s hoping its American neighbors can too.