Definition and Overview
A medication review, also known as a home medicines review in some locations, is a service designed to help facilitate and improve the communication between patients and pharmacists to promote the safe and effective use of medication. Its goal is to improve the outcomes of medications among patients. This service is provided by pharmacists privately and in person. During the meeting, the pharmacist will gather as much information as possible regarding all medications that the patient is taking and make assessment and changes if necessary.
Medication review services are fast becoming popular in many countries, and are known for giving pharmacists basic knowledge as well as a practical exercise in delivering an additional service to their patients. Pharmacists who have successfully completed a follow-up or continuing education course may offer these services.
Why It Is Needed
A medication review service is needed to:
- Assess the patients’ health conditions while under medication
- Analyze how the medications have been affecting the patient
- Determine whether the medications are effective or are working according to the treatment goals
- Document medications and the existing care plan
- Develop new and improved care plans (if some problems are found with regards to the old care plan)
- Help patients reap the best results from their medications
- Assess the performance of the medications the patient is taking
- Monitor the results of a revised care plan
Who Should Undergo
The rise of medication reviews has given patients a greater chance to become more informed and involved with their health care and to better understand their medications. Since pharmacists are medication experts, this service allows them to use their knowledge to improve the lives of patients and enhance the effects of medications to bring optimum treatment results.
Medication review services are mostly recommended for patients who are taking several medications at the same time. These are a must for patients under at least five medications prescribed in the last six months. The review will put each medication under scrutiny and analyze the way they work individually and together. Patients who are eligible for a medication review may receive only one review once every six months.
The review will help patients understand:
- Why they need to take their medications
- When the medications should best be taken
- How the medications should best be taken
- How the medications are working
- How much of the medication to take
Since medication reviews give patients more control over their medical care, it is highly recommended that patients under medications undergo a medication review. A patient can approach a pharmacist and ask for a medication review even without the approval of a doctor.
How It Works
A medication review is initiated when the patient approaches a pharmacist and specifically asks for a review. The service begins with a one-on-one interview or consultation with the pharmacist, often in a semi-private area of the pharmacy. The patient will be asked to name his or her medications, including:
- Over the counter medications
- Food supplements
- Herbal products
- Prescription medications
These medications should be brought to the clinic or hospital for actual analysis. Each one is then analyzed in terms of purpose, effects, expected results, administration method, and possibly harmful or dangerous drug interactions. If there are any problems, the pharmacist will revise the care plan.
Different Types of Medication Review
Medication reviews come in different types, namely:
- Medication Review – Standard:
Also known as MR-S, a standard medication review is a service where the pharmacist reviews a patient’s medications and prepares a BPMH or Best Possible Medication History. This type of review is intended to help improve a person’s understanding of the medications that he or she is taking.
- Medication Review – Pharmacist Consultation:
Also called MR-PC, a Pharmacist Consultation type of medication review is only necessary when a pharmacist detects a medication management issue or MMI during a standard review. In a Pharmacist Consultation, the pharmacist collaborates with the patient and the professional who prescribed the medications to resolve the said issue. The problem is often resolved by the creation and implementation of a revised care plan.
- Medication Review – Follow-up:
An MR-F, as it is called, is a review where the pharmacist follows up on patients who have initially reviewed an MR-S or MR-PC.
An MR-F often becomes necessary when there is:
- A subsequent medication change
- A difficulty in understanding or implementing the newly developed MR-PC care plan
- A medication management issue that still needs to be resolved
A medication review is also linked to DTP or drug therapy problem, a condition characterized by several symptoms such as possible interactions. A DTP has to be addressed through the creation of a new care plan.
Question: What is Medication Review?
Medication review is a comprehensive assessment of a patient’s current medications, their use, and effectiveness. It is conducted by a healthcare provider, typically a pharmacist or physician, to identify and resolve medication-related problems and optimize medication therapy. Medication reviews consider several factors, including drug interactions, adverse effects, proper dosage, and medication adherence. This process aims to improve medication management, promote patient safety, and contribute to better health outcomes.
Keywords: Medication review, medication assessment, medication optimization, medication reconciliation, healthcare provider, pharmacist, physician, medication-related problems, medication adherence, patient safety, health outcomes.
Question: What are the Benefits of Medication Review?
Medication reviews offer numerous benefits that contribute to improved medication management and patient health. Here are some key advantages:
– Identification and Resolution of Medication-Related Problems:
Medication reviews help identify medication-related problems such as adverse reactions, drug allergies, duplicate therapies, drug interactions, inappropriate doses, and non-adherence. Early detection and resolution of these issues reduce the risk of medication errors and improve patient safety.
– Personalized Medication Management:
Medication reviews allow healthcare providers to tailor medication regimens to individual patient needs, preferences, and conditions. This personalized approach enhances medication effectiveness and optimizes therapeutic outcomes.
– Improved Medication Adherence:
Medication reviews address barriers to medication adherence and develop strategies to enhance compliance. By addressing issues like complex medication regimens, side effects, or forgetfulness, medication reviews promote regular and correct medication use, leading to better treatment outcomes.
– Reduction in Adverse Drug Events and Hospitalizations:
Regular medication reviews can identify and prevent potential adverse drug events (ADEs) and associated complications. Through meticulous monitoring and adjusting medications, medication reviews minimize the risk of avoidable hospital admissions, improving overall patient well-being.
Medication reviews can lead to cost savings for both patients and healthcare systems by preventing medication errors, avoiding unnecessary hospitalizations, and reducing the need for additional healthcare resources.
Keywords: Medication-related problems, personalized medication management, improved medication adherence, adverse drug events, avoidable hospitalizations, better treatment outcomes, cost savings, healthcare resources.
Question: What are the Expected Results of Medication Review?
Medication reviews aim to achieve several positive outcomes for patients, including:
– Prevention of Medication Errors:
Medication review reduces medication errors by identifying and correcting potential problems, thus promoting safer medication use.
– Enhanced Medication Effectiveness:
Regular medication review ensures that medications are appropriate for the patient’s condition, optimize therapeutic outcomes, and minimize adverse effects.
- Increased Medication Adherence:
By addressing barriers to compliance and developing strategies to improve adherence, medication reviews promote regular and correct medication use, leading to better treatment outcomes.
– Improved Patient Safety:
Early identification and resolution of medication-related problems contribute to overall patient safety by reducing the risk of adverse drug events, hospitalizations, and associated complications.
– Reduced Healthcare Costs:
Medication reviews can help reduce healthcare costs by preventing medication errors, avoiding unnecessary hospitalizations, and reducing the need for additional healthcare resources.
Keywords: Medication errors, enhanced medication effectiveness, increased medication adherence, improved patient safety, reduced healthcare costs.