Marked geographic variation in mental health medication use

January 25, 2013
Marked geographic variation in mental health medication use
There is considerable local and regional variation within the United States in the use of antidepressants, antipsychotics, and stimulants, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in Health & Place.

(HealthDay)—There is considerable local and regional variation within the United States in the use of antidepressants, antipsychotics, and stimulants, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in Health & Place.

To examine local and regional variability in antidepressant, antipsychotic, and stimulant medication use in the United States, Marissa King, Ph.D., from the Yale School of Management, and Connor Essick, from the Yale School of Public Health—both in New Haven, Conn., examined data from a database that covers more than 60 percent of all retail prescriptions in the .

The researchers found that, within three-digit postal codes, the use of ranged from less than 1 percent to more than 40 percent of residents. Similar levels of local geographic variability were seen for and stimulants. There were very clear geographic clusters of use: based on the Kuldorff Spatial Scan, significant clusters were identified for antidepressants (relative risk [RR], 1.46), antipsychotics (RR, 1.42), and (RR, 1.77). Much of the variance could be attributed to access to health care, insurance coverage, and pharmaceutical marketing.

"The geographic patterns we identify are striking and map onto the patterns found for a host of other medical conditions and treatments—from cognitive decline to bypass surgery," King said in a statement. "Our work suggests that access to clinical care and pharmaceutical marketing may be critical for understanding who gets treated and how they get treated."

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Related Stories

Diabetes linked to increased cause-specific mortality

June 21, 2012

(HealthDay) -- Diabetes is linked with a significantly increased risk of death from many diseases, including specific cancers, in both men and women, according to a study published online June 14 in Diabetes Care.

Record 4.02 billion prescriptions in United States in 2011

September 12, 2012

People in the United States took more prescription drugs than ever last year, with the number of prescriptions increasing from 3.99 billion (with a cost of $308.6 billion) in 2010 to 4.02 billion (with a cost of $319.9 billion) ...

Recommended for you

Neural efficiency hypothesis confirmed

July 27, 2015

One of the big questions intelligence researchers grapple with is just how differences in intelligence are reflected in the human brain. Researchers at ETH Zurich have succeeded in studying further details relating to suspected ...

How does color blindness affect color preferences?

July 21, 2015

(Medical Xpress)—Dichromacy is a color vision defect in which one of the three types of cone photoreceptors is missing. The condition is hereditary and sex-linked, mostly affecting males. Although researchers have explored ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.