Background Medicines reconciliation is as an important approach to prevent medicines errors and adverse health outcomes. However, the implementation of these interventions is frequently unsuccessful especially due to difficulties in information access and communication.
Purpose To analyse the outcomes of a computer programme developed to summarise patients’ medicines on a list including additional information for the patient.
Materials and Methods Descriptive analysis was performed of medicines lists created from May 2010 to September 2012. The impact of the project was measured through a questionnaire on patients’ opinions about the medicines list.
Results A computer programme was developed by our hospital multidisciplinary team. A database was created by adding to the National Medicines Database information written for patients, by pharmacists, on how to take some of the medicines and their therapeutic goals. Monthly updates are performed to include or eliminate medicines.
Access for physicians is available throughout the hospital for reconciliation at discharge and consultation, allowing for medicines lists updates.
Over the study period 1057 medicines lists were completed for 720 different patients. Neurology and Internal Medicine doctors were the most frequent users of this computer programme. Polypharmacy and individual motivation were identified as the main factors for physicians’ adherence.
Specially-written information was available for 17% of the total database medicines by September 2012. Considering the lists, 55% of the medicines included this information since the most commonly-used therapeutic groups had been selected as high priority for information development by pharmacists.
A total of 48 patients and caregivers answered the questionnaire. 87% considered that the lists were very useful in medicines management at home while 92% thought that the written information was very clear.
Conclusions The programme we created is an effective tool for medicines reconciliation and is accepted by patients. This approach may improve patients’ knowledge and medicines use at home, reducing medicines errors.
No conflict of interest.
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