Blackburn pharmacist wins award for creating electronic drug tracking system (From Lancashire Telegraph)
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Blackburn pharmacist wins award for creating electronic drug tracking system
8:58am Monday 30th July 2012 in Blackburn
EAST Lancashire Hospital’s lead pharmacist has won a national prize for ensuring fewer errors are made about patients’ medicines when they move between home, hospitals and care homes.
Alistair Gray has worked at the Royal Blackburn Hospital for 10 years.
He won the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Medicines Safety Award 2012 after developing an electronic tracking system for the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.
Around 60per cent of patients have three, or more, medicines changed during their hospital stay, and 20 per cent experience side-effects after having their medicines changed.
Alistair’s system has made changes to the way health professionals record alterations to patients’ medicines before they are discharged from hospital, saving pharmacists between 12 and 23 hours a week.
Heidi Wright, policy and practice lead at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, said: “Health professionals in different places may stop, start, or change, a patient’s medicines at any time whilst they are under their care.
“There is no set procedure for communicating this to the next person looking after the patient, which is where mistakes can happen.
“This means the picture of a patient’s medicines is often incomplete, leading to unintentional errors. Vital medicines can end up being missed out, duplicated, or taken late.”
Alistair, from Chorley, said: “I am delighted to win the RPS award and it has been great to see more joined-up working about patients’ medicines in hospitals within the trust.
“Nobody should experience ill-health, or readmission to hospital, because their medicines are not right, and our systems are now much improved.”
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