Prescribing of psychotropic medicines: the role of learning disability nurses
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Prescribing of psychotropic medicines: the role of learning disability nurses

Danielle Adams Principal clinical pharmacist, Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, Radlett, England
Chetan Shah Chief pharmacist, Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, Radlett, England

NHS England has committed to reduce the amount of psychotropic medicines being prescribed for people with learning disabilities. Studies suggest the numbers of people with learning disabilities prescribed psychotropic medicines is far higher than numbers with documented mental health diagnoses, for which such medicines should be prescribed. This article examines the reasons why medication is prescribed, best practice, the side effects and the issues that are involved with the withdrawal of psychotropic medicines, in particular antipsychotics, in people with learning disabilities. Learning disability nurses are well placed to review and assist with the withdrawal of antipsychotic medication; they are an integral part of the challenge to reduce prescribing of antipsychotic medicines for people with learning disabilities. They also offer a vital link between healthcare professionals in primary and secondary care.

Learning Disability Practice. 19, 8, 21-25. doi: 10.7748/ldp.2016.e1763

Correspondence

danielle.adams@hpft.nhs.uk

Peer review

This article has been subject to double-blind review and has been checked for plagiarism using automated software

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 29 April 2016

Accepted: 19 August 2016

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