Managed Care

 

Pediatric antidepressant use drops 18 percent

MANAGED CARE October 2004. © MediMedia USA
The Formulary Files

Pediatric antidepressant use drops 18 percent

MANAGED CARE October 2004. ©MediMedia USA













After an FDA advisory committee called for stronger warnings to health care providers that some children and teenagers can become suicidal when prescribed antidepressants, the percentage of eligible patients taking these agents dropped considerably. Medco Health Solutions reports an 18 percent decrease in the number of pediatric patients taking an antidepressant in the first quarter of 2004, and an additional 5 percent decrease in the second quarter, contrasting sharply with a general increase in 2002 and 2003.

The decrease follows the FDA's October 2003 Public Health Advisory that reported risks of suicide (including suicidal ideation and suicide attempts) in children being treated with certain antidepressants for major depressive disorder, according to the Medco data.

"Information that linked antidepressant use and suicide among teenagers started coming out last year," says Ann Smith, a spokeswoman for Medco. "It takes time for prescribing habits to change. In addition, patients can have a 60-day and 90-day supply."

"Prescribing patterns tend to evolve slowly," says Robert Epstein, MD, Medco's chief medical officer. "The dramatic and almost immediate impact of the heightened scrutiny given to children taking these medicines to combat their depression shows that the medical community can respond quickly to new information."

Antidepressant use begins downward slide in 2003–2004

SOURCE: MEDCO HEALTH SOLUTIONS

Meetings

2014 Annual HEDIS® and Star Ratings Symposium Nashville, TN November 3–4, 2014
PCMH & Shared Savings ACO Leadership Summit Nashville, TN November 3–4, 2014
Medicare Risk Adjustment, Revenue Management, & Star Ratings Fort Lauderdale, FL November 12–14, 2014
World Orphan Drug Congress Europe 2014 Brussels, Belgium November 12–14, 2014
Healthcare Chief Medical Officer Forum Alexandria, VA November 13–14, 2014
Home Care Leadership Summit Atlanta, GA November 17–18, 2014
6th Semi-Annual Diagnostic Coverage and Reimbursement Conference Boston December 4–5, 2014
Customer Analytics & Engagement in Health Insurance Chicago December 4–5, 2014
Pharmaceutical and Biotech Clinical Quality Assurance Conference Alexandria, VA December 4–5, 2014
9th Semi-Annual Medical Device Coverage and Reimbursement Conference San Diego December 5, 2014
8th Annual Medical Device Clinical Trials Conference Chicago December 8–9, 2014
HealthIMPACT Southeast Tampa, FL January 23, 2015