Do your patients have medicine related problems?

“Keep a watch…on the faults of the patients, which often make them lie about the taking of things prescribed. For through not taking disagreeable drinks, purgative or other, they sometimes die.” Hippocrates Decorum

It seems that not much has changed for over 2,500 years!

The World Health organisation reported in 2003 that almost 50% of patients with chronic illnesses, do not take medications as prescribed. This means that the potential for medication related problems is a real life problem for many people – including your patients, both young and old.

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (Medication Safety in Australia) reported that medication related safety issues accounted for 230,000 hospital admissions in 2013. Moreover, it is likely that 20-30% of your elderly patients (65 yrs +) may require hospital treatment for medication related issues at some stage throughout the year. Importantly, medication related hospital admissions (2013) indicate that certain medicines may present a higher risk for some of your patients than others. This includes:

  • Multiple psychotropic medicines resulting in 60% of admissions for confusion
  • 40% of patients being admitted for renal failure with no serum creatinine or BUN being tested in previous 3 months – most were taking medicines acting on the Renin Angiotensin System.
  • 22% of patients being admitted for seizure whilst on anticonvulsants with no therapeutic monitoring in last 6 months.
  • 23% of patients being admitted for Asthma or COPD with most using only a bronchodilator and no maintenance therapy.
  • 31% of patients being admitted for faecal impaction with most taking highly anticholinergic agents, multiple anti-cholinergic agents or opioids.

 

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How the HMR helps

“It is much more important that the patient knows about the medicines that they have rather than what sort of medicines that they could have.” Emmanuel Pippos, Consultant Pharmacist

A Home Medicine Review may not just prevent one of your patients going to hospital – it may help them manage day to day health problems much better, at home. Australian and international research also show that a Home Medicine Review for your patients may;

Importantly, a Home Medicine Review gives the opportunity for your patient to better manage their medicines and reduce the incidence of medication misadventure. By way of example, the Australian Family Physician in April 2015 reported some of the benefits experienced by patients following a Home Medicine Review:

“My, I’m doing something right for a change…I feel great.” (positive self management)

“The pharmacist gave us an information booklet which was really good. They underlined all the symptoms that were affecting me.” (education and reduced concerns)

“It’s a very good plan in the sense that the patient gets to have a real comprehensive overview of all the medicines they’ve been prescribed…it’s always good to refer to somebody who is more trained, particularly in the various effects of medicines.” (holistic review of medicines).

What can Check My Medicines do for your practice?

It is now possible to request a Home Medicine Review (MBS Item 900) directly from our consultant pharmacist at Check My Medicines.

In this way, and through direct communication between the doctor, the accredited pharmacist, and the patient, it is possible to improve the timeliness and efficiency of delivery for Home Medicine Reviews to all of your patients. This may be particularly important for any of your patients that have been recently discharged from Hospital.

Australian research (Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research, March 2011) demonstrates that there is a significant risk of medication related harm in the first 7 to 10 days, following hospital discharge for high risk patients. Importantly, the direct referral to the accredited pharmacist resulted in quicker response times (less than 7 days) for the delivery of the Home Medicine Review, as compared to referral to community pharmacy (more than 10 days).

This is how Check My Medicines can help your patients and your practice. Our consultant pharmacist aims to deliver the home medicine review service to your patients within 7 days – making sure that your practice and your patients are our main priority.

Contact Our PharmacistBy phone, fax or email