Alameda County BHCS strongly supports the use of the newer antipsychotics, primarily due to advancements over older agents. These improvements include greater efficacy with negative symptoms and cognition, less EPS, lower risk of TD, and overall side effects.
These agents are clozapine, olanzapine, quetiapine risperidone, ziprasidone and aripiprazole. BHCS prescribing of these agents has steadily increased over the past 4 years, and it is currently estimated that 87% of all antipsychotic prescriptions are for these newer agents.
The prescription cost of these newer agents can be prohibitive. But with our BHCS MIA Program, these costs are kept lower through indigent prescription cost savings (See BHCS MIA Program).
In addition, our Outcome Studies have shown both symptom efficacy and overall costs savings to the system even though the medication prescription costs are higher for these newer agents (see Outcome Studies:
Risperidone (Risperdal), and
Quetiapine (Seroquel) )
Clinical and Economic Outcomes Associated with Olanzapine for the Treatment of Psychotic
Symptoms in a County Mental Health Population Clinical Therapeutic Vol. 24 #5, May 2002.