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Improving care with technology

8 December 2016

Academics receiving HSJ award.

School of Pharmacy team win 2016 Health Service Journal Award

A team from the School of Pharmacy, along with Beacon Digital and Invatech Health, has won the 2016 Health Service Journal Award for Improving Care with Technology.

Now in their 35th Year, the HSJ Awards are amongst the most keenly sought after accolades in British healthcare, celebrating and promoting the finest achievements in innovation and practice.

The team’s winning entry is a Welsh Government supported project to implement and evaluate an innovative electronic medicines management system for care homes.

Judges said the system had “transformed” medicines management in care homes and had “real potential” for wider application.

The electronic system, developed by Beacon Digital Health and Invatech Healthcare, gives pharmacists complete access to the medicine records of patients and enables them to remotely link-up with care homes, providing professional advice and ensuring medicines are safe and effective for patients and that administration records are correct. The tool also gives pharmacists the ability to alert care home staff to new medicines and dosages.

In their evaluation of the tool, the Cardiff University experts showed that the system could eradicate 21 of 23 types of errors relating to medicine management identified prior to the implementation of the tool, and provide a number of interventions to prevent further errors from occurring, therefore reducing significant risks to patient safety.

The team estimated that for the 26,000 care home beds in Wales, there could be a potential annual saving of between £3.2m and £4.6m by implementing the tool to reduce the number of waste medicines.

Dr Mat Smith, a member of the evaluation team at Cardiff University’s School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, commented “We are delighted that our collaboration with Beacon Digital was recognised by the judges to be both innovative and pioneering. We are very proud that we have been able to evidence improvements in both the safety and efficiency of medicines management in care homes.”

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