Background Previous audits at the hospital have shown poor prescribing of regular medicines prior to elective surgical procedures, which raised patient safety concerns.
Since May 2013 there has been a cohort of prescribing pharmacists and pharmacy technicians working on the theatre admissions unit (TAU) with defined roles including medicines reconciliation and assessing patients for risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE).
Purpose This audit was to determine if regular medicines were being prescribed correctly, appropriately and within 24 h of admission to the hospital by the prescribing pharmacists on TAU. It was also to determine if VTE risk assessments were completed within 24 h of admission and if suitable thromboprophylaxis was prescribed.
Material and methods A retrospective audit was carried out using the electronic prescribing system and theatre lists for all elective patients on TAU over a 5-day period in August 2014. Drug histories completed by the pharmacy technician were compared with regular medicines prescribed by the TAU pharmacist.
The electronic prescribing system was used to check VTE risk assessments and what thromboprophylaxis was prescribed post-surgery.
Results Medicines reconciliation was completed within 24 h for all 62 patients admitted to TAU during the audit period.
All appropriate regular drugs were prescribed by the TAU pharmacist on the day of admission. In 28/62 patients where regular medicines were not prescribed, there was an appropriate reason documented on the electronic prescribing system for omission. VTE risk assessments were completed in all patients within 24 h.
Conclusion Prescribing pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have a pivotal role in completing medicines reconciliation within 24 h and prescribing regular medicines to ensure patients do not miss doses, reducing the risk of post-surgery complications. Early completion of VTE risk assessments and the prescription of appropriate thromboprophylaxis should also reduce post-op complications.
References and/or acknowledgements Cohort of prescribing pharmacists and pharmacy technicians who all cover TAU.
All other healthcare members of TAU.
No conflict of interest.
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