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Care Homes Patient Safety Network

Background

As part of the National Medicines Safety Improvement Programme (MedSIP), ICHP in collaboration with Shamim Jivraj, Lead Pharmacist for Adult Health (NHS North West London Collaboration of Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), have been working with various ambitious care homes in North West London. The aim of the National Programme is to:

Reduce medicine administration errors in care homes by 50% by March 2024, through medicines optimisation and quality improvement.

To reach this aim, ICHP supports NWL care homes in identifying one out of four so called ‘change projects’ which have been identified by a collective of care homes across the country (between September 2019 to March 2020) to have a potential positive effect on medicine administrations errors in care homes.


The four change projects that care homes can implement within the National Programme and with the support of ICHP are:

  • introducing daily safety huddles
  • introducing learning from events into the day to day of the home
  • optimising three-way communication between GP, care home and community pharmacy
  • managing medication-round interruptions.


These four change projects vary in their aim and set-up and each care home participating in the programme chooses their change project to match their current priorities and improve quality of care within a chosen area.

Read more about the National Patient Safety Improvement Programmes here.

What we did

ICHP supports care homes on their path within the MedSIP from start to finish. This usually involves identifying an adequate change project, setting-up necessary infrastructure, upskilling the whole care home team in quality improvement techniques and supporting the care home in showing overall programme impact by measuring data before and after the implementation of the change project and turning the data into easy-to-read graphs.

In addition to supporting NWL care homes in participating in the National Programme, ICHP has also hosted NWL’s first ‘Care Homes Safety Network Event’ in September 2021.

The first network event aimed at the following:

  • To introduce the National Medicines Safety Improvement Programme (MedSIP) as well as the National Managing Deterioration Safety Improvement Programme (ManDetSIP) to NWL care homes and make them aware that they can participate in both programmes
  • To jointly develop a NWL Care Homes Safety Network to share learnings that support care homes in managing medicines and deterioration
  • To support care home collaboration in North West London and provide peer support and learning

Results

The first NWL Care Homes Safety Network Event was very well attended by 65 system stakeholders across all eight NWL borough, with attendees working in roles across the board from care home managers and registered nurses to PCN pharmacists.

The main session revolved around a NWL care home which had successfully participated in the MedSIP and had reduced their medication-round interruptions by 50% through implementing various interventions such as having removed the phone from the nurse doing the medication round. Attendees fed back that they really enjoyed this collaborative approach and appreciated the chance to learn about relevant themes from their peers.

The workshop was a great success with representatives from Care Homes across all boroughs in North West London, Community Pharmacists, Primary Care Network Pharmacists, CCG Pharmacists, Local Authority and CCG Safeguarding and CQC all coming together to discuss such an important topic of improving medicines safety in care homes.

The feedback from all who attended was very positive, for me it was encouraging to hear that all key stakeholders welcomed the opportunity to network, discuss and share good practice examples on such a topical issue for care homes and are looking forward to future events.

Shamim Jivraj
Lead Pharmacist for Adult Health
NHS North West London Collaboration of Clinical Commissioning Groups

Apart from aforementioned case study, attendees had the chance to connect in smaller breakout rooms and discussed how they would like to use the network events in the future. Most attendees were very keen for more training around medication errors, high risk medications and implementing quality improvement techniques in practice.

Despite the training aspect, attendees emphasized their enthusiasm for a NWL network to enable more collaboration across the system as well as peer learning through case studies and challenges and success in practice.

ICHP will host the NWL Care Home Safety Network Event every quarter covering a different topic each time. The next Network Event will be hosted in January 2022. If you are interested and would like to receive an invitation, please email Lena Woldman.