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Action sought to cut antipsychotics

An Alzheimer's charity is calling for urgent action to help reduce the prescription of antipsychotic drugs to dementia patients.

Alzheimer's Research UK said sufferers should have prescriptions reviewed within 12 months because prolonged use of such drugs has been found to almost double the threat of early death.

It wants a number of groups - including GPs, psychiatrists, care homes and people with dementia and their carers - to support the Right Prescription campaign which calls for patients to have their medication reviewed by 31 March next year.

Chief Executive, Rebecca Wood, said: "The danger of prescribing antipsychotics long term for anything other than exceptional circumstances is well established.

"Action to reduce the prescription of these drugs and develop alternative treatments has lacked urgency.

"This campaign, fully supported by Alzheimer's Research UK, should renew that urgency and drive home the need to invest in more research so that safer, more effective treatments can be found."

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Alzheimer's Research UK