PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- A health plan says children and adolescents in Rhode Island's child welfare system are three times more likely than those in the general population to use prescription anti-depressants, anti-psychotics and other psychotropic medications.
The Providence Journal reports that about 30 percent of the 3,608 living in foster homes, group homes and residential facilities licensed by the state Department of Children, Youth and Families in the 2011 budget year were taking one or more psychotropic drugs.
Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island says that compares with about 10 percent of the general population of those 21 and under insured by the HMO that serves Medicaid recipients.
Rhode Island ranks roughly in the middle of all states nationally for its rate of use of psychotropic drugs for children in foster care.
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