Over ‘237 million medication errors occur in England each year’. This is an astonishing amount and occurs in all care locations including but not limited to hospitals, clinics, residential and nursing homes and in homecare.
The Care Quality Commission has produced good guidance in involving pharmacies for organisations to access. Often, seeking guidance with medications from a GP, usually the ‘prescriber’, is difficult as they are generally not available when you need to speak to them, at the point where a problem has occurred.
In home care there is an overreliance on training alone, when in fact there needs to be just as much a robust reliance on supervision, review and audit of those administering and assessing medication. Moreover, there also needs to be a significant push for organisation to evidence to CQC that carers are ‘competent to deliver care’. There are medication tools available to help care providers manage their compliance for example at the National Institute of Clinical Excellence, the Care Quality Commission, the United Kingdom Home Care Association among others.
In a home care organisation, the Registered Manager is responsible for compliance and should seek to ensure that all the staff under their management are ‘competent to deliver care’. Governance is a very high priority here at Liberty Private Care. Whilst we do train our staff, we also supervise them, monitor them by completing medications audits and medication assessments on them, which then evidences exceeding our compliance obligations.