October 27, 2009
Frail and vulnerable residents of nursing homes throughout Illinois are being dosed with powerful psychotropic drugs, leading to tremors, dangerous lethargy and a higher risk of harmful falls or even death, a Tribune investigation has found.
Thousands of elderly and disabled people have been affected, many of them drugged without their consent or without a legitimate psychiatric diagnosis that would justify treatment, state and federal inspection reports show.
Lloyd Berkley, 74, was in a nursing home near Peoria for less than a day before staff members held him down and injected him with a large amount of an antipsychotic drug, according to a state citation. A few hours later he fell, suffering a fatal head injury.
One woman was given a psychotropic drug partly because she refused to wear a bra. Nursing home staff administered an antipsychotic medication to an 87-year-old man because he was “easily annoyed.”
In all, the Tribune identified 1,200 violations at Illinois nursing homes involving psychotropic medications since 2001. Those infractions affected 2,900 patients.
Read entire article: http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/chi-nursing-home1-psychotropics-oct27,0,4539632.story
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