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Friday, 13 November 2020

Medicines optimisation project for people with learning disabilities awarded HSJ patient safety award

Medicines optimisation project for people with learning disabilities awarded HSJ patient safety award

Pharmacists at South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust have been recognised for the work they have been doing to improve services for adults with learning disabilities living in care homes.

The two-year pilot project providing medicines optimisation reviews for adults with learning disabilities living in care homes was launched in January 2019 to address unmet needs surrounding medicines optimisation. Targets set for improvements in safe care included:

  • enhancing the quality of life for people with learning disabilities;
  • reducing preventable harm from medicines;
  • improving quality of care through better medicines use; and
  • integrated care.

Various measures were taken, including supporting STOMP (STopping Over Medication of People with a learning disability, autism or both with psychotropic medicines) initiatives, improving monitoring of physical health and mental health, empowering patients, carers and families in the drive for safety by ensuring that they are fully informed about the patient’s medicines and are involved in decisions about their care, and many more.  

The Learning Disability Medicines Optimisation in Care homes service is provided by the Pharmacy team at South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust in collaboration with South West London Alliance (Kingston, Richmond, Merton, Wandsworth & Sutton CCGs).

Judges commented that this winning initiative was a truly worthwhile intervention in relation to STOMP, and a simple yet highly effective and innovative approach to patient safety. This is something that is easily transferrable to other vulnerable groups.

Chief Pharmacist, Michele Sie, said: “Having been integral in the setting up of this service in collaboration with SWL CCG Chief pharmacists,  I am proud and delighted that our pharmacists have received this well-deserved recognition for all the hard work they have carried out. This is a fantastic achievement for the team who have used their unique and considerable expertise around medicines to optimise and improve patient care in this area.”

Acting Medical Director, Dr Charlotte Harrison, said: “We are thrilled that the hard work of our pharmacists has been recognised in this way and we are incredibly proud of the team. In particular the hard work of Aiste Navickaite and Amanda Yenn Teng Lee who are responsible for implementing and providing this service which has received excellent feedback from both healthcare professionals, service users and carers.”