Saturday, October 11, 2014

Is that information fresh, or old and moldy?

Now and then when I visit Alltop Speaking, I look at Jeff Davidson’s Interruption Management. His latest article dated October 3rd is titled A Nation of Druggies and includes a startling statement that:

“Patrick Di Justo, writing in Wired magazine observed, ‘Antidepressants are the most commonly popped pills in the country, accounting for 227 million prescriptions filled last year alone...'.”

You might assume that last year logically would refer to 2013. But, glance at the web address for Mr. Davidson’s article, and you will see a 2007/12/ date (Jeff likes to reuse his stuff). What year was Mr. Di Justo really talking about?  His article, From Benzedrine to Abilify, Chronicling America’s Love of Psychiatric Drugs, was posted at back on September 25, 2007.

Since the U.S. population now is about 319 million, if those prescriptions were spread around evenly it would mean that roughly 71% of us had gotten one. Obviously that’s silly, so what percent of U.S. adults really are using antidepressants?

Over at National Institute of Mental Heath (NIMH) there is a post by Tom Insel from December 6, 2011 titled Director’s Blog: Antidepressants: A Complicated Picture which says that:

“As these new CDC data show, 11 percent of Americans aged 12 and older (3.7 percent of youth between 12 and 17) report taking antidepressants. Last year, antidepressants were the second most commonly prescribed medications, right after drugs to lower cholesterol. About 254 million prescriptions were written for them, resulting in nearly $10 billion in costs.”

That is useful information, rather than just something to startle us. The image of moldy bread came from here.

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