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Mental health prescribing data highlights dementia medicines use

Antidepressant prescribing increases

September 14th 2021

Tagged: Clinical Zone news NHS statistical reports

By Charles Gladwin

Prescribing of dementia medicines has bucked a downward trend, quarterly data indicates. After five quarterly periods of decreasing levels of prescribing, the latest figures show a 2% increase to 997,000 items for April to June 2021.

However, this is still a 4% decrease from 1.04 million items in the same quarter in 2020/21, said NHS Business Services Authority. There were also 481,000 fewer dementia prescription items issued than expected in the 16 months since lockdown measures were implemented, based on historical trends, a statistically significant decrease.

Antidepressant prescribing increased. The level of 20.5 million items in April to June 2021 was 2% up on the previous quarter and up 7% on the same quarter in 2020. However, while 1.2 million more antidepressant prescription items were issued than expected since lockdown was introduced, this was not statistically significant.