New CMS Data Show Half of AHCA Members Hit 30 Percent Antipsychotics Reduction Goal Ahead of Schedule
Association’s Quality Initiative drives drop in usage in skilled nursing centers nationwide
American Health Care Association (AHCA) today announced that half of its
skilled nursing center members have reached or surpassed a nationwide goal in
reducing antipsychotic usage by at least 30 percent, seven months ahead of the
December 2016 deadline. As a result of the Association’s metric-based Quality
Initiative and its partnership with CMS’ National Partnership to Improve
Dementia Care, the overall decline in antipsychotic use in AHCA member centers
is 30.4 percent. The achievement represents a faster rate of reduction than
non-members, which currently show a 25 percent decrease.
“Reaching this goal seven months ahead of schedule
highlights our profession’s commitment to improve the quality of life for
individuals living with dementia,” said Mark Parkinson, President and CEO of
AHCA. “This latest milestone means that tens of thousands of residents are no
longer experiencing the negative effects of these medications. But we won’t
stop with this announcement. We will continue to work with CMS and our Quality
Initiative to set new, ambitious goals to reduce usage even more.”
Based on CMS data, 23.2 percent of long-stay residents in
non-member centers and 23.6 percent in AHCA member centers were receiving an
antipsychotic medication in 2011. Currently, 17.4 percent of residents in
non-member centers and 16.4 percent of residents in AHCA member centers are on
“The sharp drop in usage shows how our members are driving
change on a national level,” said Dr. David Gifford, AHCA Senior Vice President
of Quality and Regulatory Affairs and a board-certified geriatrician.
“Providers, residents and their families are clearly learning more about safer
alternatives to treating dementia. Together with CMS and the Partnership, I’m
confident we will continue to see progress.”
AHCA launched its metric-based Quality
Initiative in 2012 and later joined CMS’ National Partnership to Improve
Dementia Care in Nursing Homes to raise awareness about safe alternatives to
antipsychotic medications for residents and patients with dementia through a
systems-based and person-centered approach to care. In 2014, AHCA and CMS set
goals to further decrease the use of antipsychotics in skilled nursing centers
by a total of 30 percent by December 2016.
In April, CMS added antipsychotic medications to its
long-stay quality measure component of Nursing Home Compare to track and
encourage improvements in skilled nursing care centers.
The Association expanded its Quality Initiative in May 2015
to include eight measurable targets that align with the CMS Quality
Assurance/Performance Improvement (QAPI) program and federal mandates, such as
Five-Star and the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT)
For more information, visit the
AHCA Quality Initiative website.
The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represent more than 13,000 non-profit and proprietary skilled nursing centers, assisted living communities, sub-acute centers and homes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. By delivering solutions for quality care, AHCA/NCAL aims to improve the lives of the millions of frail, elderly and individuals with disabilities who receive long term or post-acute care in our member facilities each day. For more information, please visit www.ahca.org or www.ncal.org.