Appropriate Use of Psychotropic Drugs in Children & Adolescents: A Clinical Monograph

Today, children and adolescents with behavioral health challenges are generally prescribed an alarming number of medications. This high prescription rate, paired with questions about the appropriateness of the diagnoses used to justify the drugs’ use, has raised many concerns among families, practitioners and youth advocates alike. 

Thinking ahead about the challenge: An updated monograph

Magellan Health has had its eye on this issue for years, publishing a popular monograph, “Appropriate Use of Psychotropic Drugs in Children and Adolescents,” on the topic in 2013, which addressed the anxiety and confusion around the issue. Leveraging new data and research, we have released an update. Prescribing psychotropic medications to children and adolescents can be appropriate, but parents, caregivers and practitioners need to fully understand the risks and monitor their use.

What’s new in 2017?

Our updated monograph includes:

  • New indications since 2013
  • Brand-name medication names included on the list of psychotropic drugs commonly prescribed for children, which was a first-in-the-industry summary of these medications in the original monograph. Primary care physicians, pediatricians and behavioral health providers who treat children and teens found it extremely useful.
  • A section outlining states’ approaches to children’s drug monitoring programs 

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