The Electronic Medicines Optimisation Pathway (EMOP)

Reducing medication errors through community pharmacy

Status: Completed
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Insight

Research estimates that in England 237 million medication errors occur each year. These errors occur at every point at which a patient comes into contact with a drug – including prescribing, dispensing, administering and monitoring.

While almost 75 per cent are unlikely to result in harm to patients, 25.8 per cent have the potential to cause moderate harm and 2.0 per cent have the potential to cause serious harm.

For patients being discharged from hospital, it can mean the difference between them experiencing a smooth transition to home or having to face an emergency re-admission.

Intervention

EMOP provides a more efficient way for hospital pharmacy teams to send updated medication discharge information details electronically to a patient’s community pharmacist, enabling timely follow up for patients who have had new medications and/or medication changes during their hospital stay.
With support from NHS trusts, Local Pharmaceutical Committees (LPC), and Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs), Eastern AHSN has facilitated implementation of technology and supported pathway change in trusts and community pharmacies. This included funding licence costs, helping to engage and train community pharmacists, supporting programme management and communications.

Electronic Medicines Optimisation Pathway (EMOP) programme

Impact

Masih Kunduzi, a Pharmacist Manager in Bury St Edmunds has already seen positive results including a morphine dose error which could have proved fatal and believes it is the way forward; “This new system allows the hospital to send referrals to the pharmacy with an up-to-date list of the patient’s medicines post-discharge. When a repeat prescription is generated by the GP, I can now cross reference between the two and communicate any discrepancies to the GP. It’s a valuable service benefiting those who are vulnerable, ensures medication errors during the clinical transition from secondary to primary care are minimised and enables a continuous care for patients.”
The programme in the eastern region commenced with the first trust launching the system and pathway in May 2018. We now have seven trusts live in the region with plans for more to come online in 2020. Since the project started, nearly 6,000 patient referrals have been made. Our ambition is to support at least 70% of acute trusts to adopt this innovation in our region. Eastern AHSN are continuing to collect lessons learned and share best practice throughout the region and beyond. As of July 2020, this service will become part of the Community Pharmacy Contract Framework.

Masih Kunduzi, a Pharmacist Manager in Bury St Edmunds has already seen positive results including a morphine dose error which could have proved fatal and believes it is the way forward;

“This new system allows the hospital to send referrals to the pharmacy with an up-to-date list of the patient’s medicines post-discharge. When a repeat prescription is generated by the GP, I can now cross reference between the two and communicate any discrepancies to the GP. It’s a valuable service benefiting those who are vulnerable, ensures medication errors during the clinical transition from secondary to primary care are minimised and enables a continuous care for patients.”

Who was involved?

To find out more about the EMOP programme, contact Sophie Castle-Clarke, Principal Advisor – [email protected].

Eastern AHSN worked with pharmacists from each hospital trust in the region to roll out the service with the support of our six local pharmaceutical committees (LPCs):

 

Reference

http://www.eepru.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/eepru-report-medication-error-feb-2018.pdf)

Nazar, H., Brice, S., Akhter, N., Kasim, A., Gunning, A., Slight, S.P. and Watson, N.W., 2016. New transfer of care initiative of electronic referral from hospital to community pharmacy in England: a formative service evaluation. BMJ open, 6(10), p.e012532. https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/6/10/e012532

Sabir, F.R., Tomlinson, J., Strickland-Hodge, B. and Smith, H., 2019. Evaluating the connect with pharmacy web-based intervention to reduce Hospital readmission for older people. International journal of clinical pharmacy, 41(5), pp.1239-1246. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11096-019-00887-3

Wilcock, M., Sibley, A., Blackwell, R., Kluettgens, B., Robens, S. and Bastian, L., 2020. Involving community pharmacists in transfer of care from hospital: Indications of reduced 30‐day hospital readmission rates for patients in Cornwall. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ijpp.12603

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