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NHS England is supporting the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s call for health professionals and patients to work together to ensure better use of medicines.
A guide, called Medicines Optimisation: helping patients make the most of medicines, has been published by the Society which provides frontline professionals with four guiding principles to make sure that the right patients get the right choice of medication, at the right time.
This has been developed through collaboration between patients, health professionals, lay representatives and patient groups, so importantly it focuses on patient outcomes rather than processes.
Sir Bruce Keogh, the Medical Director of NHS England, said:
“There is still much to be done to help patients, the public and society more broadly to get the best outcomes from medicines. Too many hospital admissions caused by the adverse effects of medicines could have been prevented, so professionals and patients need to work much closer together.
“These four simple but important principles of ‘medicines optimisation’ could revolutionise medicines use and I encourage everyone to adopt these whether they prescribe, dispense, administer or take medicines.”
The four principles are to aim to understand the patient’s experience, ensure evidence based choice of medicines, make medicines optimisation part of routine practice and ensure medicines use is as safe as possible.
They have been endorsed not only by NHS England but also the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, the Royal College of General Practitioners, the Royal College of Nursing and the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry.
Medicines are the most common therapeutic intervention in the NHS in England. It is critical to good patient care that we ensure that we obtain the maximum benefit from medicines whilst minimising harm.