Drugs designed to treat severe mental illnesses are being prescribed to Medicaid patients at inappropriately low doses, at considerable expense and for conditions where their benefits haven't been proven, a team of mostly Oregon researchers reports.
Scientists from the Oregon State University College of Pharmacy, Oregon Health and Science University and Columbia University's psychiatry department reviewed records for 830 Oregon Medicaid patients who had been given antipsychotic medications approved for conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The researchers found the majority of those patients did not have the underlying mental conditions for which the drugs were approved for prescription. Instead, they were given to patients to treat health concerns such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder or insomnia.
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