Use of atypical antipsychotics in nursing homes and pharmaceutical marketing

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Clinical and Population Health Research Program; Meyers Primary Care Institute; Department of Quantitative Health Sciences

Publication Date


Document Type



Geriatrics | Health Services Research | Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry


OBJECTIVES: To describe the current extent and type of pharmaceutical marketing in nursing homes (NHs) in one state and to provide preliminary evidence for the potential influence of pharmaceutical marketing on the use of atypical antipsychotics in NHs.

DESIGN: Nested mixed-methods, cross-sectional study of NHs in a cluster randomized trial.

SETTING: Forty-one NHs in Connecticut.

PARTICIPANTS: NH administrators, directors of nursing, and medical directors (n = 93, response rate 75.6%).

MEASUREMENTS: Quantitative data, including prescription drug dispensing data (September 2009-August 2010) linked with Nursing Home Compare data (April 2011), were used to determine facility-level prevalence of atypical antipsychotic use, facility-level characteristics, NH staffing, and NH quality. Qualitative data, including semistructured interviews and surveys of NH leaders conducted in the first quarter of 2011, were used to determine encounters with pharmaceutical marketing.

RESULTS: Leadership at 46.3% of NHs (n = 19) reported pharmaceutical marketing encounters, consisting of educational training, written and Internet-based materials, and sponsored training. No association was detected between level of atypical antipsychotic prescribing and reports of any pharmaceutical marketing by at least one NH leader.

CONCLUSION: NH leaders frequently encounter pharmaceutical marketing through a variety of ways, although the impact on atypical antipsychotic prescribing is unclear. Geriatrics Society.

DOI of Published Version



J Am Geriatr Soc. 2015 Feb;63(2):297-301. doi: 10.1111/jgs.13180. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society


First author Camilla B. Pimentel is a doctoral student in the Clinical and Population Health Research Program in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) at UMass Medical School.

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Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID