The CQC has published a report sharing the learning from risks and good practice in medicines arising from inspections.
The report highlights six areas of risk that are common to all providers:
- Prescribing, monitoring & reviewing
- Transfer of care
- Reporting & learning from incidents
- Supply, storage & disposal
- Staff competence & workforce capacity
The key recommendations for providers, including GPs, are:
- Monitoring of high-risk medicines, regularly auditing adherence to national guidance such as NICE guidelines, and updating prescribing following national patient safety alerts. Ideally use prescribing software. High risk medicines include: insulin, ACE inhibitors, anticoagulants, methotrexate and lithium
- Systems and processes to enable accurate and timely changes to prescriptions for example, when patients are discharged from hospital and after reviews for patients with long-term conditions
- Assessment of stock of emergency medicines, with regular expiry checks and, readily accessible in an emergency
- Closer working with pharmacy professionals to focus on medicines optimisation
- Learn from medicines incidents. Reporting should be consistent with statutory notifications as appropriate, with a good process to review and discuss significant events.