#MyMeds is a simple action to remind all healthcare professionals who see patients in urgent or emergency care settings, to check what regular medications the patient has, and to make sure, if appropriate, they are delivered.
‘Patient unable to wake up from anaesthesia. Seen by anaesthetist. After one hour thirty minutes, ET tube removed patient very sleepy and muscle twitching. Very stiff and difficult to rouse. Patient has Parkinson’s disease and is taking Sinemet. Patient has not been prescribed Sinemet since arrival to hospital.’
National Patient Safety Agency 2010 report:
Reducing harm from omitted and delayed medicines in hospital
The pressure on emergency and urgent care services has reached unprecedented levels in recent months.
There are many causes and few obvious easily implementable solutions. Regardless of the challenges everyone involved in the health and care system has a part to play in ensuring that patients continue to receive safe and quality treatment and management.
Patients often present with multiple co-morbidities and as a result have numerous prescription medications. While some of these may be the cause or precipitation of an acute deterioration resulting in a presentation to an urgent or emergency care facility – others are required on a regular basis to ensure the patient doesn’t develop the life-threatening complications of their illness that the medications are designed to prevent.
#MyMeds is a simple, but powerful, action and state of mind for all health care professionals. It emphasises the need for all patients to receive their regular medications, where appropriate, regardless of their location.
#MyMeds Action: Be aware if the patient you are seeing is on a regular medication, which is still needed in the context of their presentation and ensure they receive it at an appropriate time.
- #Action 1 — Tweet that you’re joining the #MyMeds Campaign — use the #MyMeds micro-poster
- #Action 2 — Print or view the #MyMeds micro-poster and see how you can utilise it to engage staff in your area
- #Action 3 — Ask each patient or their carer on presentation if they have regular meds, and ensure they get them, where appropriate
In a pressured health care system it is vital #MyMeds are considered when patients present to emergency care settings. Long waits may be unavoidable, both for initial assessment and then transfer to an appropriate care facility. But if regular medications are not prescribed complications may occur which could further increase waiting times and result in patient harm.
Any health care professional can ask some simple questions to patients and carers about #MyMeds. Whether adult or child, there is always likely to be a patient in an urgent or emergency care settings who may not have access to or be aware they even need their regular medications. In this time of huge health system pressure you could make a difference with a simple action: #MyMeds