Communication and engagement from the start, across all stakeholders, is vital for success. A simple, robust, communications plan will ensure all stakeholders are aware of what the new process will involve, and when it will happen.
Consider what information you are sharing. The data sharing agreement template can be adapted locally and agreed as to the information being shared between the practice, care home and pharmacy.
Make sure you have enough skilled people, the technology, materials and equipment in the care home and GP practice. Work with the pharmacy or pharmacies from the start. To start this new way of working you will need admin, nursing, and care staff to get involved in the care home, the GP practice, and the pharmacy.
Develop an implementation plan with objectives, a timeline, list of tasks and people assigned to those tasks.
Involve people from the beginning. Appoint a lead within your organisation and encourage others to have a lead for their organisation. Agree and discuss new processes with the other stakeholders. Every staff member in the care home that is trained and authorised to handle medication will need to be informed and may need further training and given access to further elements of the GP record.
Use the staff information leaflet to explain what will be happening and the benefits for staff and residents. Other information is included in the frequently asked questions and good practice example.
Business as usual
Identify someone to manage the process once established. Make sure your on-going management plan includes:
- briefing and training new staff
- checks to stop anyone using paper-based medication ordering
- a process for ensuring staff who leave are removed as proxies from GP systems
Make sure a standard operating procedure (SOP) is in place for all staff to refer to, which outlines how the process will work.
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