Are We Overmedicating the Children in Our Care?

Presented by Janet Cahill, Ph.D.
Pre-recorded presentation
3 Homestudy CE Credits

Approved for Nevada Psychologists, MFTs and LCSWs.

NPA is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. NPA maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Click here to register

About the Workshop

This presentation addresses the dramatic increase of Antipsychotic medications being used for children from preschool to 18 years of age. Other psychotropic medications are also discussed. There is growing evidence that many medications for children and adolescents are being prescribed with very weak evidence of efficacy and poor understanding of  side effects. The quality of regulation of these medication, and current clinical practice of using them are also raising concerns. For example, there is an enormous increase of using antipsychotics ,like risperidone, for very young child to treat irritability. Children of color, children in foster care, and children in low-income households are more likely to receive these medications.

The presentation addresses the benefit to harm ratio for Atypical Antipsychotics. Alternative, evidenced based psychosocial treatments will be reviewed. 

Learning Objectives

At the end of this pre-recorded program, participants will be able to:

  1. List 3 major side effectives of atypical antipsychotics  for children
  2. Explain the sources off label medications.
  3. Identify the biased techniques used by Big Pharma to improve efficacy.
  4. Described 3 psychosocial alternatives  that can replace the use of atypical antipsychotics.
  5. Compare the diversity of  Medicaid’s use of these medications.

About the Speaker

Dr. Janet Cahill has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Temple University. She was trained as a family therapist at the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic.  Dr. Cahill is a Professor Emerita in the Department of Psychology at Rowan University. She served as chair and was the coordinator of Rowan University’s master’s program for Licensed Professional Counseling. Her private practice specializes in assessing abused and neglected children and their families. She has developed model protocols in parenting evaluations and recommendations for evidenced based treatments. She has expertise in evaluations and treatment for Factitious Disorder Imposed on Another (aka Munchausen by Proxy).

She is a strong advocate for evidenced base treatment for children and families. She is a certified therapist and Level 1 trainer for Parent Child Interaction therapy (PCIT).

Dr. Cahill has consulted to many human services agencies, including the New Jersey Division of Child Permanency and Protection, the Nevada Division of Child and Family Services, South Carolina CPS, and Colorado CPS and Acenda.   An active trainer, she has provided numerous workshops to human service professionals in the community. An overarching goal of her activities is to bring academic expertise and evidence-based practice into community settings. Dr. Cahill's CV


This presentation is intended for psychologists, other licensed mental health providers, and graduate students of psychology.

General Information

Access to Webinar/Handout Materials:
This is a 3-hour pre-recorded presentation for homestudy CE credit. Electronic copy of handout materials will be sent out by email to attendee after registration is completed along with link(s) to view pre-recorded live, virtual webinar

Refunds & Grievance Policy: 
Participants may direct questions or grievances to NPA at (888) 654-0050. 

Approval and CE credit:
Nevada Psychological Association (NPA) is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists. NPA maintains responsibility for the program and its content. 

If you want to receive homestudy CE credit for this pre-recorded presentation, you will need to complete and pass an online Post-Test Questions form.  According to APA’s Standards and Criteria for Approval of Sponsors, attendee must score at least 75% accuracy to qualify for CE credit, ensuring that attendee did actually attend and complete the program. Partial credit will not be issued to those that do not score at least 75% on posttest. Attendees are allowed three attempts to complete and pass the online posttest to receive CE credit.

Completion of the evaluation form is appreciated, forms are tabulated and reported to our CE Committee for discussion, analysis of participants’ satisfaction with content, instructor performance, etc.

CE certificate will be issued via email within 72 hours of receipt of post test and evaluation form, provided a passing score is obtained.


Hoekstra, P. J., & Dietrich, A. (2022). First do no harm: use off-label antipsychotic medication in children and adolescents with great caution. European child & adolescent psychiatry, 31(1), 1–3.

Pillay J, Boylan K, Newton A, Hartling L, Vandermeer B, Nuspl M, MacGregor T, Featherstone R, Carrey N. Harms of Antipsychotics in Children and Young Adults: A Systematic Review Update. Can J Psychiatry. 2018 Oct;63(10):661-678. doi: 10.1177/0706743718779950. Epub 2018 Jun 4. PMID: 29865900; PMCID: PMC6187435.

Loy JH, Merry SN, Hetrick SE, Stasiak K. Atypical antipsychotics for disruptive behaviour disorders in children and youths. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2017 Aug 9;8(8):CD008559. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD008559.pub3. PMID: 28791693; PMCID: PMC6483473.

Guber, K. M., Cortes, N. D., & Duan, L. (2022). Risk of Obesity Among Children Prescribed Atypical Antipsychotics for Six Months or More. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, 32(1), 52–60.

There is no potential conflict of interest and/or commercial support for this program or its presenter.