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Supporting medicines adherence through needs assessment and a digital toolkit!

Development of a digital 'supporting medicines adherence toolkit' for use by all health and social care professionals in an integrated care system.

  • Idea
  • 2022

Meet the team

What is the challenge your project is going to address and how does it connect to the theme?

The use of medication compliance aids (MCAs) eg dosette boxes & NOMAD trays, has grown significantly in recent years and the demand for them is not always being driven by patients’ needs.

Although MCAs may be of value to support some patients with medicines adherence and maintaining independent healthy living, they may not be the best intervention and in some cases may be detrimental to patient safety.

There is a lack of understanding amongst some social and health care professionals about what other support is available to people to support medicines adherence and so often a MCA is requested.

MCAs require more resources, staff time for dispensing, materials eg plastics for re-packaging of medicines and multiple pickups or delivery each month. This all has an impact on the environment affecting sustainability.

Through a digital supporting medicines adherence toolkit, including a needs assessment, all patients would be better supported with medicines adherence.

What does your project aim to achieve?

The primary aim of this project is for all social and health care staff to have access to a ‘system wide’ digital medicines adherence support toolkit which can be used on hand held devices with functionality to upload medicines adherence needs assessments to various digital platforms eg Connected Care.

The other primary aim is to reduce avoidable pressures on community pharmacy as completed medicines adherence needs assessment forms would be shared digitally with nominated community pharmacies to support decisions for better medicines adherence as reasonable adjustment.

Other aims:

  • support people to remain independent as long as possible
  • to support people’s health and care needs with all solutions and adjustments considered
  • raise awareness of alternatives to MCAs
  • reduce inappropriate requests for MCAs
  • reduce use of materials (including plastics) and energy in the supply of MCAs
  • reduce avoidable pressures on social care staff (visits to cmmunity pharmacy and delivery)
  • improve cross-sector communication

How will the project be delivered?

The project will be co-ordinated and delivered by the Frimley CCG medicines optimisation team working collaboratively with all partners including adult social care across the Frimley ICS region.

We will use the PDSA improvement model and test the toolkit in a number of pilots initially. These pilots will help to test the usability of digital toolkit and it’s impact.

Outcome measures:

  • number of people assessed for medicines adherence that go on to have reasonable adjustments with their nominated pharmacy
  • number of inappropriate MCA requests prevented
  • qualititative data to measure user friendliness of digital toolkit through a questionnaire

How is your project going to share learning?

Findings will be widely disseminated through the Q community/events/media, professional networks, conferences, media (including social media), Frimley CCG website  and communications, and a journal article if appropriate. We will also communicate and work closely with Oxford academic health science network (AHSN) patient safety collaborative and medicines optimisation lead, NICE medicines and technologies programme associates and care associations.

With informed consent, we will share staff experiences and all outcomes  (positive and negative).

We will share all findings and potential wider benefits of using an ICS wide medicines adherence digital toolkit.

The project procedures will be manualised so it can be easily implemented in other NHS systems and provide support where needed.

We have experience and completed a multi-award winning project with the AHSN in the past. We endorse the promotion of innovation across NHS services and will seek to engage with the AHSN to support roll-out.

How you can contribute

  • We are open to offers of support and collaboration from all sectors.
  • We welcome critical friends and critical analyisis.
  • At the point of dissemination of findings we would welcome opportunities to engage, share learning and support roll-out. If you would like to be involved in future dissemination events, please let us know.

Plan timeline

1 Jul 2022 Project Planning begins
1 Sep 2022 Project pilots training begins
1 Oct 2022 Project pilots begin
1 Feb 2023 Data analysis begins, qualitative feedback begins
1 Mar 2023 Review and amend before roll out

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