The number of people prescribed antidepressants in Scotland has continued to rise in the past year, despite a government pledge to reduce usage.
Nearly 4.7 million antidepressants were sold in the last financial year, up 350,372 on the previous one, Scottish government figures published today show.
More than 10% of people aged 15 or older use anti-depressants daily in Scotland. The figures show that the rate of increase of prescriptions for antidepressants also rose from 7.6% in 2009-10 to 8.1% in 2010-11, mirroring the trend in England, where the figures were 8.9% in 2009 and 9.3% last year.
On entering government in 2007, the Scottish National Party administration had pledged to halt the annual rate of increase by 2009-10, and then to reduce usage by 10%.
The figures also showed usage varied across Scotland, with five health boards – NHS Greater Glasgow, NHS Lanarkshire, NHS Ayrshire and Arran, NHS Forth Valley and NHS Tayside – all above the average.
Prescribing of dementia drugs in Scotland has continued to increase too, from 121,833 dispensed items in 2009-10 to 135,822 in 2010-11.
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