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Safe Handling of Medications
There are many aspects to the safe handling of medicines although it translates mainly to the 5 R's: R... READ MORE >

How Chemistree can use the New Medicine Service (NMS) to benefit Care Home residents
The New Medicine Service (NMS), an initiative designed to help patients adhere to medication guidelines... READ MORE >

Pharmacy advice essential in providing quality care to the elderly
Residents in care homes usually receive support from a range of healthcare services including dentists,... READ MORE >

The launch of the Electronic Pharmacy Advice Form
Chemistree has launched its new electronic pharmacy advice form, an updated version of the paper pharma... READ MORE >

CQC prosecutes care home for breaches in regulations
CQC standards place great emphasis on ensuring that staff understand how people’s health and welf... READ MORE >

Improve care and reduce medication costs for Carehome residents
Residents in Care Homes are amongst the most vulnerable members of our society. They are likely to be e... READ MORE >

Opportunity to cut medication wastage and improve care
A Department of Health study last year found that about 300m worth pounds of medicines are wasted each ... READ MORE >

Chemistree at the Care Show, London Olympia, 11th and 12th October 2011
Chemistree is a specialist provider of pharmacy services to Care Homes in the NHS and Private Sector an... READ MORE >

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Improve care and reduce medication costs for Carehome residents

Residents in Care Homes are amongst the most vulnerable members of our society. They are likely to be extremely elderly; they may be suffering from multiple progressive illnesses and may be taking multiple medications for these illnesses. They may also be suffering from mental health issues such as dementia , which means that they may not be able to speak up for themselves. Polypharmacy, which is the prescribing of numerous medications without adequate reviews by the prescriber, is also a well recognized problem amongst our elderly population.  

Clearly, care home staff who administer residents’ medications have a much wider role than simply following the doctor’s directions accurately.  It is essential they are able to monitor  residents to ensure that all medication is still safe, effective and necessary. In addition, carers also need to know about any life style or dietary information that would benefit their residents. Unfortunately, most staff at care homes do not have specialized medication training and will struggle to excess this information, and consequently, residents will suffer.  As experts on medication, pharmacists are well placed to provide this information and a care home’s regular pharmacy is ideally placed for this. At Chemistree we are passionate about providing this service because we have seen what a difference it makes. Our experienced pharmacists clinically screen all prescriptions and write out a Pharmacy Advice Form which will contain all the necessary information that carers require for that individual resident.   In addition, we also encourage prescribers to review medications and advice them on safer alternatives, aiming to optimize medication regimens and reduce polypharmacy. 

A full cost benefit analysis of our advice is always provided. Having provided this service free of charge for our customers since 2007, our pharmacy advice forms improve clinical outcomes for residents and reduce emergency doctor call outs and hospital admissions.   In addition, as polypharmacy is tackled, many of our care homes will see a reduction in the number of medications their residents are taking.  This has got clear benefits for the residents, as they will be on optimum medication regimens with minimal side effects, for the home staff as they have to administer fewer medications, and benefits for the NHS as medication costs and avoidable GP call outs and hospital admissions are reduced.  Perhaps the only party that this would not directly benefit is the pharmacy as pharmacies are paid per numbers of medications dispensed. At Chemistree, though we are a business and we need to generate an income, we will not do so at the expense of our patients.  Improving our patients’ lives is a cornerstone of the ethos of our company and we see this as the significant measure of our success. Our Pharmacy Advice Forms are a major innovation and are extremely popular with our customers who have come to rely on them to ensure that their residents are receiving best possible care. We also hope that through market forces, other members of our industry will adopt this practice thus benefitting all patients.


Alpa Karia

Clinical Services Pharmacist

Chemistree Pharmacy

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