Safer medicine administration in care homes during Covid-19

The HIN engaged with OPUS and commissioned them on a pro bono basis to adapt their existing comprehensive guidance to ensure care home staff were aware of how to safely administer medicines without using a dosette box during the pandemic.

Project overview

We shared the adapted guidance with our care homes with the permission of OPUS. The resources were also made available to medicines optimisation and medicines safety leads across the AHSN/PSC network, so they could share with their contacts and colleagues in their local areas if similar resources were not already available.

It was quickly realised that the guidance could be effective if adopted and spread across care homes who were responding to the sudden move from Monitored Dosage Systems (MDS) or multi compliance aids (MCAs) to original pack administration. The HIN engaged with community pharmacists and care homes early during the pandemic to understand the gaps emerging from the necessary adaptations in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Community pharmacists were under overwhelming pressure and some pharmacies moved to supplying original packs for some low risk patients to free up capacity to enable the pharmacy team to continue to support patients in high risk groups. The spread ensured there was no re-invention of the wheel and available best practices were spread to care home staff at a time it was most needed.

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