National Standard on Psychotropic Medicines

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care has introduced a national standard aimed at improving the treatment of individuals with cognitive disabilities or impairments. You will find guides for professionals and plain English versions for everyone in the community.

This national standard was released by the Commission on 9 May 2024.

The Psychotropic Medicines in Cognitive Disability or Impairment Clinical Care Standard outlines specific measures to ensure the responsible and suitable utilisation of psychotropic medications, and represents a substantial advancement toward safer and more effective treatment practices, especially for older people who suffer from cognitive decline.

Despite a recent decline in antipsychotic prescriptions among older Australians, challenges persist, particularly concerning adverse effects such as cognitive decline, falls, and increased mortality risk associated with psychotropic medicine use.

These standards come as a response to the recent Royal Commission into Aged Care Safety and Quality.