06/03/2012 - Royal Pharmaceutical Society in Scotland launches report on improving pharmaceutical care in care homes
RPS Scotland has launched a new report that calls for radical changes to the way pharmaceutical care is provided in care homes. The report calls for:
- Dedicated roles for pharmacists that are integrated with those of other health professionals working in care homes
- Clinical information and prescribing data to be shared with pharmacists working in care homes to improve the safe and effective use of medicines
- Pharmacists working with their medical and nursing colleagues to reduce the use of psychoactive medication, polypharmacy and a number of other clinical priorities
- Consider greater use of the model of one pharmacist and one GP to each care home to improve the quality of pharmaceutical care and team work.
With increasing numbers of frail older people living with long term conditions and increasingly complex requirements, many with palliative care needs, some care homes are now providing aspects of care which historically would have been provided in hospital and should be resourced and managed as such.
Alex MacKinnon, Director of the RPS in Scotland said, “This report is a significant contribution to Scotland’s national debate on how we look after our frail older people. We need to make significant improvements in how medicines are used. We have set out what we believe are the most important changes that are required. Stating these priorities does not take away from the much larger agenda of how all medicines are safely and effectively used in frail older people which needs to be tackled systematically and comprehensively.
“The RPS looks forward to working with the Scottish Government, NHS Scotland, Social Care, care home providers, pharmacists, GPs, nurses and all health professions involved in care in care homes at national and local level.”
Alpana Mair, Chair of the working group set up by the RPS to look into pharmaceutical care in care homes said, “The working group looked at different models of care both in the UK and abroad and found examples of best practice on which they based their recommendations. There are good models here in Scotland we can build on. We need to utilise pharmacists’ expertise to deliver more person-centred care.”