Ökad förskrivning av läkemedel - en effekt av långa vårdköer? En undersökning av sambandet mellan tillgängligheten till barn- och ungdomspsykiatrin och förskrivning av antidepressiva läkemedel.
Increased prescription of drugs - an effect of long waiting lists? A study of the relationship between access to child and adolescent psychiatry and prescription of antidepressants.
In recent years, access to child and adolescent psychiatry has declined. At the same time, there has also been a rapid increase in prescription of antidepressants, particularly to children and young adults. The National Board of Health and Welfare in Sweden is recommending psychological treatment for mild to moderate cases of depression and anxiety, but the availability to this kind of treatment is not sufficient to meet the demand. This may be one of the reasons for the large increase in prescriptions of antidepressants, which is a problem due to side effects and costs connected to the usage. This paper examines if waiting times to the child and adolescent psychiatry have a significant effect on the quantity of prescriptions of antidepressants. Panel data from 2012 and forth is analyzed, which makes comparison over time between regions possible. In the study, two different measurements of waiting times are used. To avoid spurious relationships in the results, various variables are included in the model, such as psychiatrists, psychotherapists and reduced mental well-being. The results show correlation between waiting times and antidepressants. If the proportion who receives care within 30 days increases, the amount of prescriptions decreases. There are various explanations why. The results also show positive correlation between reduced mental well-being and antidepressants. If the proportion who experiences reduced mental well-being increases, the prescription of antidepressants will also increase.