Alert! Changes to the Medication Management Program

The government funded medication management program that assists consumers and Aged care residents in reviewing their medication will on longer be available every 12 months. Instead Medicines will be reviewed every 2 years. Changes started in March. http://5cpa.com.au/programs/medication-management-initiatives/

Many organisations are concerned about the changes as this will put aged care residents at risk. There have been many incidents where aged care residents have been on unnecessary medications, including painkillers.

http://www.shpa.org.au/scripts/cgiip.exe/WService=SHPA/ccms.r?Pageid=10393

http://www.theage.com.au/comment/aged-care-drug-abuse-that-points-to-scandal-20140105-30bni.html

In fact because there is a high risk of this happening, medications should be reviewed every 6 months. Aged Care residents use a high amount of medications and reviewing medication every 2 years is negligent. It is unbelievable that the Government will put vulnerable people at risk.

Now that these changes have been put in place here are some tips in ensuring that medication is managed appropriately especially for Aged Care residents.

1. Always thoroughly check what medication and how much is listed on the invoice/bill and question the pharmacy and the facility

2. Every 3 – 6 months try to make a time with the pharmacist to discuss and review the medicines that are listed or given to the resident  

3. If a meeting is set up to review a resident’s care plan that medication is discussed during the meeting

4.  Always inform the GP of any concerns you have with medicines

For more info on managing medication please click on link provided:

https://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/nmp-pdf-resguide-cnt.htm

 

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2 thoughts on “Alert! Changes to the Medication Management Program”

  1. Every month I receive a pharmacy bill for each of my parents who are in residential aged care. Several times I have been confused about some of the medicines and I have made a telephone call and asked for clarification. The pharmacists have always been happy to talk about the medications and, in general terms, what they are prescribed for. The other option is to ring my parents’ doctor who will always return a call to discuss whatever issue arises. If you do not have this sort of response from your pharmacist or doctor think carefully … do you have the services you and your loved one need? Should you discuss the situation with your Director of Nursing (DON) or local doctor with a view to a better situation?

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    1. There has been times that the Don could not give enough info so Pharmacist was helpful.. Also the Aged Care complaints scheme is helpful in providing info on which medicines residents are responsible financially and which the facility need to purchase. There has been situations where facilities gave inaccurate info on pharmaceutical items. Even GP’s did not know what should be provided under specified care and services – pharmaceutical supplies. This is very important to know as there are situations that high care residents did not need to pay for items such as Panadol. Too be honest I have questioned doctors about the specified care and services and they have no idea. medical providers should be educated in this area.Recently an aged care facility needed to change their medication policy on this as there were inconsistencies. However these issues are not looked into by the medication management program, just is to ensure medication is not overused and on unnecessary medication. Maybe the Government should look into these issues further?

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