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Report: Americans increased prescription drug requests when pandemic hit

A report shows more people reached for prescription medications when the coronavirus began to significantly impact the United States.
In this Nov. 5, 2018 file photo, a drugstore employee reaches for medicine from shelf in downtown Tehran, Iran. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) - More people reached for prescription medications when the coronavirus began to significantly impact the United States.

Researchers for Express Scripts analyzed prescription claims for medications filled between mid-February and mid-March. They found that, overall, prescriptions for drugs to treat depression, anxiety, and insomnia increased by 21 percent.

Anti-anxiety prescriptions had the biggest jump at 34 percent.

Anti-depressant prescriptions rose over 18 percent and anti-insomnia increased by nearly 15 percent.

The figures peaked the week of March 15 when the World Health Organization declared a pandemic and the U.S. declared a national emergency.