Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Save the Date: CMS Webinar on Antipsychotics

Mark your calendar! CMS has just announced a webinar launching their national action plan to reduce the use of antipsychotic medications in skilled nursing care centers. The CMS broadcast is open to the public, but targeted more for federal and state surveyors, providers, clinical professionals and consumers.

This webinar ties perfectly with AHCA/NCAL’s newly launched Quality Initiative and our goal to reduce the off-label use of these drugs 15 percent by December 2012.

That means there’s no time to waste. Save the date now:

Thursday, March 29, 2012
1:00pm EST – 2:00pm EST

http://surveyortraining.cms.hhs.gov/

Too often, antipsychotic medication is used in an attempt to modify behavior in individuals who are living with some type of dementia. They increase the risk of death as well as falls with fractures, hospitalizations and other complications resulting in poor health. This use is considered off-label by the FDA, which issued a “black box” warning for the elderly with dementia. Moreover, these drugs are expensive, costing Medicare hundreds of millions of dollars. This issue is getting more and more attention, from partnering provider organizations and the media, and especially from CMS.

AHCA/NCAL realizes that if we are to be the low-cost, high quality solution in our nation’s health care delivery system, then we must do more to prevent and reduce the off-label use of antipsychotics. That's why we're challenging our members to reduce these medications by 15 percent by the end of the year, compared to our other Quality Initiative goals which have a three-year target.

One of the best ways for facilities to learn about what they can do is to hear from fellow providers. If your facility(ies) is already doing innovative things to reduce the off-label use of antipsychotics, then we want to hear from you. Email us your story: qualityinitiative@ahca.org.

And to learn more about AHCA/NCAL’s Quality Initiative, its 15 percent reduction goal for antipsychotics, and resources to achieve this goal, please visit qualitiyinitiative.ahcancal.org.

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