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Partnership to Improve Dementia Care

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has launched the Partnership to Improve Dementia Care, a coalition of regulators, nursing homes, advocacy groups and caregivers that will safeguard nursing home residents from unwarranted antipsychotic drugs. The partnership, which includes Stratis Health, represents an unprecedented marshaling of public and private resources toward this issue. Its aim is to reduce the use of antipsychotics by 15 percent by December 31, 2012, and by larger percentages in future years until it eliminates the problem.

Antipsychotic drugs may be deemed appropriate in some circumstances, based on clinical assessments. But they shouldn’t always be the first option for nursing home staff trying to calm residents. Nor should their use last any longer than medically necessary. The new national initiative will raise public awareness of antipsychotics’ misuse, improve regulatory oversight and, most important of all, train nursing home workers how to care for aggressive or agitated patients without resorting to drugs.


Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes Campaign. Dementia resources.

American Medical Directors Association letter. Outline of partnership mission for medical directors. (4-page PDF)

Dementia Care: The Quality Chasm (46-page PDF)

Description of Antipsychotic Medication Quality Measures on Nursing Home Compare. Two new measures of antipsychotic medications. (2-page PDF)

Get the Facts About Antipsychotic Drugs and Dementia Care. Brochure by the Long Term Care Community Coalition.

How to Help Your Loved One: Improve Dementia Care by Reducing Unnecessary Antipsychotic Drugs. A two-sided flier for family and friends. (2-page PDF)

Improving Antipsychotic Appropriateness in Dementia Patients (IA-ADAPT). This website includes information and resources to help clinicians, providers, and consumers better understand how to manage problem behaviors and psychosis in people with dementia using evidence-based approaches. This includes brief lectures, written content, quick reference guides for clinicians and providers, and information for families or patients on the risks and benefits of antipsychotics for people with dementia.

Interdisciplinary Team Review of Individual Dementia Care Cases. Questions to consider. (2-page PDF)

Provider Implementation. State Coalition flow diagram. (1-page PDF)

Resource Letter to Providers re Reduction of Antipsychotic Medication Use in Nursing Homes. This letter was created by the MN Partnership to Improve Dementia Care and is intended for nursing homes to share with medical directors, physicians, and/or physician extenders. (1-page Word doc)

State Coalition Provider Question Worksheet. Self-assessment tool. (2-page PDF)

State Coalition Provider Checklist. Suggestions for quality improvement. (1-page PDF)

Unnecessary Drugs – Antipsychotics and Their Renewed Focus. By Rich Januszewski, M.S., Pharm. Topics In Geriatric Medicine and Medical Direction, A Peer Reviewed Journal of the Minnesota Medical Directors Association, December 2012. (7-page PDF)

Webinar: Considerations for Reducing and Eliminating Antipsychotic Medications for Behaviors in Elderly Patients. Presented by David Lawless, DPharm, MBA Pharmoeconomics, regional director for WA, ID, MT, Northern WY, Omnicare Pharmacy Services. (69-minute webinar)

Webinar: Effective Strategies for Reducing Antipsychotic Medications: Ecumen Awakenings Program. Speaker is Maria Reyes, RN, Quality Improvement Nurse: Behavioral Health & Awakenings project manager, Ecumen Awakenings. (51-minute webinar)

Webinar: How to Have Fun and Not Get Hit: Successful Activities for Persons with Dementia. Speaker: Kim P Petersen, MD, Spring Green, WI. (90-minute webinar)

Webinar: Improving Care for People with Dementia in Nursing Homes: Part 1. Hosted by Susan Wehry, MD, VT Department of Disabilities. Presented by Improving Patient Care National Coordinating Center (NCC). (57-minute audio and PowerPoint.)

Webinar: Improving Care for People with Dementia in Nursing Homes: Part 2. Hosted by Susan Wehry, MD, VT Department of Disabilities. Presented by Improving Patient Care National Coordinating Center (NCC). (64-minute audio and PowerPoint.)

Webinar: My Family Member Has Dementia: What Do I Do Now? Presented by Kim P. Petersen, MD, Verona, Wisconsin. Hosted by the Great 8+ QIO Group. Recorded June 23, 2014. (60-minute webinar, closed-captioned)

For more information about the Partnership to Improve Dementia Care or Stratis Health’s role in this important initiative, please contact Kristi Wergin, program manager, 952-853-8561.