A comparison of benzodiazepine and related drug use in Nova Scotia, Canada and Australia

Tett, S. E., Smith, A. J., Sketris, I., Cooke, C., Gardner, D. and Kisely, S. A. (2007). A comparison of benzodiazepine and related drug use in Nova Scotia, Canada and Australia. In: , Canadian Journal of Clinical Pharmacology: 4th Canadian Therapeutics Congress: The virtuous circle: Therapeutics from molecule to patient to population and back. 4th Canadian Therapeutics Congress, Halifax, Canada, (e159-e159). 27-30 May, 2007.


Author Tett, S. E.
Smith, A. J.
Sketris, I.
Cooke, C.
Gardner, D.
Kisely, S. A.
Title of paper A comparison of benzodiazepine and related drug use in Nova Scotia, Canada and Australia
Conference name 4th Canadian Therapeutics Congress
Conference location Halifax, Canada
Conference dates 27-30 May, 2007
Proceedings title Canadian Journal of Clinical Pharmacology: 4th Canadian Therapeutics Congress: The virtuous circle: Therapeutics from molecule to patient to population and back   Check publisher's open access policy
Place of Publication Hamilton, Canada
Publisher Canadian Society of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Publication Year 2007
Year available 2007
ISSN 1198-581X
Volume 14
Issue 2
Start page e159
End page e159
Total pages 1
Language eng
Formatted Abstract/Summary Background:   The prescription of benzodiazepines can be a problem if used for long periods, or in at-risk populations (elderly). We compared the use of benzodiazepine and related prescription medicines, in Nova Scotia, Canada and in Australia, in seniors and social security beneficiaries.

Methods:   The Nova Scotia Pharmacare Program and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme in Australia were used to obtain dispensing data for all publicly subsidized benzodiazepines and related compounds. Utilisation was compared (2000-2003) using the WHO Anatomic Therapeutic Chemical/ Defined Daily Dose (DDD) system.

Results:   Use of benzodiazepines increased at steady but comparable rates in both areas. However, the use of benzodiazepines in Nova Scotia was more than double that of Australia from 2000 (123 and 48 DDD/1000 beneficiaries per day) through 2003 (138 and 57 DDD/1000 beneficiaries per day). Eight different benzodiazepines made up 90% of the use in Nova Scotia, with lorazepam most commonly prescribed. By contrast, only four different benzodiazepines made up 90% of the use in Australia, with diazepam most commonly prescribed.

Conclusions:
  There were large differences between the type and rate of benzodiazepine prescribing. Use in both jurisdictions is increasing. The findings are especially concerning in Canada as use of benzodiazepines in Atlantic provinces has been reported to be less than other parts of Canada. Variations between the jurisdictions may be due to the limited range of benzodiazepines available in Australia, or different initiatives to control benzodiazepine use.  Modified formulary policies, as well as education for patients and prescribers may promote more appropriate prescribing of benzodiazepines.
Subjects EX
1115 Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences
1103 Clinical Sciences
110319 Psychiatry (incl. Psychotherapy)
Keyword Benzodiazepines
Prescribing medicine
Canada
Australia
Q-Index Code EX
Additional Notes Abstract no.108

 
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Created: Wed, 03 Sep 2008, 09:34:05 EST by Linda Mclean on behalf of School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences