Ordering Care Home Medicines

In line with NICE guidance, care home providers:  

  • should have an up-to-date medicines policy, based on current legislation and the best available evidence that includes written processes for ordering medicines
  • should ensure that care home staff have protected time to order and check medicines delivered to the home
  • should ensure that at least 2 members of the care home staff have the training and skills to order medicines, although ordering can be done by one member of staff
  • should retain responsibility for ordering medicines from the GP practice and should not delegate this to the supplying pharmacy
  • should ensure that records are kept of medicines ordered
  • should check medicines delivered to the care home against a record of the order to ensure that all medicines have been prescribed and supplied correctly

If an item is required mid cycle and/or for drugs not listed on the prescription form/Patient Access a request should be sent to the residents GP. To reduce the possibility of medication errors and to ensure clear messages are transferred between the GP practice, care home, and the pharmacy, the Medication Notification Form for Care Homes should be used.

To reduce delays, it is important that all the information is accurate and clear patient details are given to make the process more efficient.

The request email should be kept and/or a note should be made in the care homes communication book with the date of request, what was ordered and signature of staff member requesting.

The care home is responsible for communicating with pharmacy as the supplying pharmacy may not be expecting interim/acute medication. Please inform the pharmacy of the name of resident, details of the expected medication and how urgent the item needs to be delivered by the pharmacy or if the care home is collecting.

Please note: This form is to be used when staff are requesting interim/acute medications. You should continue to order your monthly cycle using current processes.

If you are not already using Patient Access to reorder your resident’s monthly medication, please contact the Medicines Optimisation in Care Homes team to find out more about proxy ordering in care homes. The benefits of care homes ordering medication online for residents can be found here.

Last updated on 29 March 2022 at 14:39 by Samantha Russell