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Medicines optimisation in Walsall care homes shortlisted for innovation award

A close up photo of Sonia Bigra

Sonia Bigra, Senior Pharmacy Technician

Our medicines management experts worked closely with Walsall CCG during the pandemic to optimise medicines safety and reduce waste at care homes. Working collaboratively, the Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU), the CCG and care homes designed a new process for medication ordering and handling, which has been shortlisted for a Meridian Celebration of Innovation Award.

The work was part of the medicines optimisation in care homes pilot project across the Black Country. Sonia Bigra, Senior Pharmacy Technician at MLCSU, visited care homes in Walsall to carry out an audit of how medicines are managed.

Sonia said:

“Interpreting what data and insight really mean can sometimes be difficult. When the CCG created the stakeholder group, it was much easier for me to explain the problems I found at the care homes. Having the GP and the care home owner there, I could talk directly to the source which allowed me to go further when explaining the issues.”

She took part in a series of dedicated panels with CCG and care home provider stakeholders to discuss in detail what she found and how they can use the intelligence to design practical interventions and improve medicines safety.

Tracie Wilson, Clinical Quality and Safety Facilitator, Walsall CCG, said:

“In the midst of the pandemic, stakeholders worked collaboratively to agree a shared vision and development of a streamlined medication ordering process. This has reduced the incidence of medicines safety related concerns and facilitated better communication, improved relationships between all stakeholders and ongoing support to the care home.”

This is the fifth instalment of the annual awards hosted by The West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) which celebrate healthcare innovation in the West Midlands. The work in Walsall has been shortlisted in the ‘Medicines Optimisation and Management Innovation Award’ and the ‘Patient Safety and Improvement Award’ categories.